Russia Wants Apple to Disclose Source Codes

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Russian Communication Minister, Nikolay Nikoforov, met with Apple’s general manager in Russia Peter, Engrob Nielsen and SAP Russian Managing director Vyacheslav Orekhov ,to ask both parties to cooperate against foreign espionage (via Reuters).

What Nikoforov proposed is for Apple and SAP to disclose their source codes to Russian authorities; measures designed for ensuring the right of consumers and corporate users to privacy, a timely question in the light of Edward Snowden’s disclosures about the colossal NSA eavesdropping scandal.

“Edward Snowden’s revelations in 2013 and U.S. intelligence services’ public statements about the strengthening of surveillance of Russia in 2014 have raised a serious question of trust in foreign software and hardware,” Nikiforov said in the statement released late on Tuesday.

Since the former NSA contractor turned the world’s attention to privacy, security experts have concluded that US government-backed standards for software encryption have created backdoors for the NSA to spy on users.

We don’t have to go too far, just take a page from a recent report signed a security researcher and iOS forensic expert Zdziarski, who pointed to several backdoor attack points that apparently facilitate organizations like the NSA.

When asking companies to disclose their source code Nikoforov said:

“Obviously, companies which disclose the source code of their programmes are not hiding anything, but those who do not intend to establish cooperation with Russia on this issue may have undeclared capabilities in their products,” Nikiforov said.

The ministry pointed to Microsoft, who has long been in cooperation with the Russian government, and has been sharing its sources code for the Windows operating system and products since 2003.

In March this year the Russian government announced that it will ditch iPads over spying fears.