Australian banking group Westpac has increased its stake to 16% in Canberra-based quantum cybersecurity firm QuintessenceLabs.

The technology provider said that the additional investment by Westpac would give the bank expanded quantum cybersecurity services such as advanced key management and policy management solutions to mitigate identity theft risk, customer data breaches and privacy concerns.

The relationship between the two parties dates back to 2015, when Westpac acquired an 11% stake in the cybersecurity firm. Since then, the two parties have collaborated on developing cybersecurity solutions for the financial industry that comply with regulatory norms and lower the time and costs related to sensitive data encryption.

QuintessenceLabs founder and CEO Vikram Sharma said that the collaboration with Westpac has been beneficial to both parties.

Westpac CIO Dave Curran said: "As a major financial institution, data security and protecting our customers is of paramount importance.

“This increased commitment is a further signal of the importance of QuintessenceLabs technology to our capability with respect to data security."