Aveen Ismail is a member of PrimeKey’s EJBCA Development Team. Besides being a talented PKI specialist, Aveen likes to spend her free time reading, baking, and riding mountain bikes. Being an avid cineast, Aveen got a certification as a cinema projectionist during her studies at KTH Royal Institute of Technology.
How does a cinema projectionist end up with a bunch of cryptologists? Aveen smiles and says, “While I was studying computer science at KTH in Stockholm, I was contacted by a recruiter on behalf of PrimeKey Solutions, who offered me a job on the phone. At first I was not interested. But being me, I thought it would be impolite to turn the offer down on the phone, so I agreed to visit them. And when I did, I found the job opportunity too interesting to resist. This was in 2008 and I still find my work both challenging and interesting. I have learned a lot about HSM PKI and CA/VA. One day I’d like to try working with the PrimeKey Professional Services Team, but I still regard my job as a programmer in the EJBCA Development Team to be the very best.”
We started talking about the working environment at PrimeKey Solutions and Aveen continues, “PrimeKey is a fascinating working environment. I have great colleagues and there is a friendly atmosphere, where you can ask anybody anything if you get stuck. My favourite working day at PrimeKey is when I can dedicate the whole day to one code assignment; where I can focus fully on my task, instead of small hacks, when I might spend two days searching and thirty minutes solving.”
When asked by her friends and family what she does at work, Aveen simply answers, “I trust everybody you trust, because I trust you. What I’ve just said illustrates to a certain extent the idea behind "web-of-trust" (or a CA-certificate relationship), which is an application of a Public Key Infrastructure (PKI). The point is that we develop software that allows for a safe communication in an environment that is not safe (i.e. the Internet). PKI is basically a structure that ties two keys to one unique identity, like myself. A public key that the whole world knows about and can use to encrypt messages to me and a private key that only I know so only I can decrypt the messages they send to me. Beyond that it gets more complicated – this is after all the world of cryptography.”