5G-Based Blockchain Platform Launched By South Korean Telecom Giant KT

KT Corporation, South Korea’s largest telephone company, has launched its 5G network-based blockchain technology brand called GiGA Chain.

The Korea Times reported that GiGA Chain is designed to boost the security of Internet-of-Things (IoT) devices, which are expected to grow to 30 billion by 2021 thanks to the enhanced connectivity of 5G. KT’s blockchain brand features a new technology, called GiGA Stealth, that makes IP addresses of the connected devices “invisible” to hackers.

“In the 5G era, a large number of IoT devices are expected to be used and many of them are likely to be more vulnerable to cyberattacks,” said Lee Dong-myeon, president of future platform business group at KT. “So we decided to come up with high assurance cybersecurity measures using our blockchain technology.”

The telephone company also announced its GiGA Chain Blockchain as a Service (BaaS) platform that will allow companies to easily handle key features of blockchain technologies, such as smart contracts. It can be used for the digitization of vouchers that local governments have issued to their residents.

“Many companies want to use the BaaS service to improve their security measures but there have been many hurdles in developing their own systems because the country has less than 200 engineers that are capable of developing this technology,” said Seo Young-il, senior vice president and head of blockchain biz center at KT. “Also developing this kind of service requires a huge amount of time and money. To make more companies use this service, we recently completed the development of the GiGA Chain BaaS platform and launched it in March.”

According to KT, its blockchain-based payment system is already being used by the South Korean city of Gimpo, which is scheduled to issue a total 11 billion won ($9.7M USD) worth of local vouchers for its residents in 2019.

“Korea is expected to issue overall local vouchers worth 2 trillion won ($1.76 billion) in 2019, and we expect more regional governments to adopt KT’s blockchain-based payment system that is convenient and safe,” Seo said. “Users are just required to download the mobile app and present a QR code to sellers. Business owners had to visit local banks to exchange vouchers for real money but they can avoid those hassles by using KT’s blockchain-based payment system.”

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