I apologize if this isn't the correct place to ask this question, but I'm hoping to get some insight from the community on a problem I'm facing.
I recently finished an interview with a company as a web developer. I'm the first and only developer that is about to be hired in this company.
They have a web application that was created by a software company, and they have received the source code of the app.
Years went by, and now they want to refactor their web app, but this time by hiring a full time web developer that takes responsibility of anything regarding the web app.
I just finished the interview and everything went perfect! but here comes the problem ..
They wanted to test my refactoring ability, so they gave me a couple of tasks to refactor. I said that's great, send me a copy of the source code and I'll refactor the web app locally and show you all the updates I can make. but they refused for security reasons, they seem to be afraid that I might steal, hijack, or attack the web app in any shape or form by having a copy of the source code.
They instead wanted me to do a live refactor during an online call by accessing the IT admin's screen using a software and accessing the C panel from his computer and modify the code live inside the C panel.
It was pretty difficult, I explained to the IT admin that this is difficult for a variety of reasons:
I'm completely new to the code base, I need sometime to understand what's going on with the code and study it good.
Refactoring inside the C panel is difficult, I need a code editor like Visual Studio Code to easily navigate through the project and better understand what is going on.
But unfortunately, he refused, saying that he can't share the source code to a stranger, as I haven't signed a job agreement yet.
I explained to him that it's perfectly normal to share a "COPY" of the source code for a potential hire, as any modifications will only reflect in my local machine, and not the hosted app, they are two separate instances.
I'm feeling a bit overwhelmed and I'm not sure how to proceed, so I posted this question here to learn from you experts and those who had a similar experience.