An Apple store in New York, New York.
Laura Stanley—Getty Images/All Canada Photos
August 2, 2014 9:16 AM EDT

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The suggestion that Apple hand over the source code for OS X and iOS to the Russian intelligence services for inspection might seem like a nonstarter.

For one thing, Apple doesn’t share its crown jewels with anyone, let alone a hostile foreign power.

For another, Russia’s homegrown talent for finding and exploiting security holes is legendary. Earlier this week a Russian hacker group called Worm announced that it had infiltrated the Wall Street Journal’s database and would be selling user information on the Internet. Last week Worm’s target was CNET.

It turns out that Russia has good reason to expect Apple to cooperate: Microsoft has been doing it for more than a decade.

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