"Microsoft does that!," the Russians may have said in their top-secret meeting with Apple's representativse. However, the Cupertino tech giant has yet to answer this awkward request.
Reuters reports that Russian officials have asked for a meeting with Apple and SAP. They explicitly asked the two big software companies to give the government access to their source code just so that they understand how that works and that the regular citizens using an iPhone or a Mac are not spied on by the United States or the United Nations.
According to the report, this request comes as a result of the US and Europe's debate whether they should impose sanctions against Russia. The big question came via Russia's Communications Minister, Nikolai Nikiforov. He met with Apple's manager in that part of the world, Peter Engrob Nielsen. The proposal is designed to reassure the Russian citizens that their data and private info remain private.
Apparently, the trigger for this request is related to Edward Snowden's revelations from back in 2013. Other countries around the world have the same fears, but so far none of them has asked Apple to disclose their source code.
The source code is usually a heavily guarded secret for software companies. The Russian Minister for Communications has explained why such companies should disclose their source code in an effort to reassure foreign governments. Apparently, Microsoft has been doing that for over ten years.
Apple regularly publishes only parts of the source code on their Open Source website. So far, both Apple and SAP have declined to comment on this story and it remains to be seen if they accept Russia's request.