Dr. Saarinen started in cryptography and information security in the late 1990s. His career has been split between academia and the security industry — from commercial penetration testing to designing (post-quantum) crypto algorithms. He is a widely cited academic author in addition to being a hands-on hardware and software engineer. Since 2018 he has worked for PQShield Ltd., a University of Oxford spin-out specializing in post-quantum cryptography development. He holds a Ph.D. in Information Security (Cryptanalysis) from Royal Holloway, University of London (2009).
At PQShield Markku is leading the embedded systems and secure coprocessors team. This project is building a RISC-V based IP for applications such as Secure Elements, Smart Cards, Trusted Platform Modules, and Hardware Security Modules. Markku is an active contributor in the RISC-V Cryptography Task Group and NIST’s Post-Quantum Cryptography standardization project.