Relations between Russia and the United States aren’t exactly rosy. Things could deteriorate further now that Russia has asked Apple to hand the government access to source code for iOS and OS X.
The request comes a day after the U.S. and Europe announced new sanctions against Russia for its role in Ukraine, according to Reuters.
Russia wants source code from Apple and SAP to make sure “their widely used products are not tools for spying on state institutions.” The request has been designed “to ensure the rights of consumers and corporate users to the privacy of their personal data, as well as for state security interests.”
A computer’s source code is considered the “crown jewels” for any software maker. Most commercial software companies refuse to give it away to third-parties.
Interestingly enough, since 2003, Microsoft has provided its source code for the Windows operating system and other products with Atlas, a technology institution with close ties to the Russian government.
Apple and SAP both declined immediate comment.