McAfee rip-off and so-called ‘customer service’

McAfee logoHaving had a great example of good service from Amazon the other day, here is an example of how NOT to treat customers. I use McAfee ASAP, which is a managed antivirus and firewall service.

I received an email this morning saying that my subscription was due for renewal in 90 days. Being a diligent, GTD kind of guy, I immediately went online and bought another year’s subscription. Or at least, that’s what I thought I did.  In fact, what I started was a 90-minute fool’s errand.

Instead of adding a year onto the finish date of my current subscription, they added four new licences for a different product which expire on 15th of February 2008. In other words, they’ve helped themselves to a 25% price increase and a cash flow boost simply by tricking me into re-subscribing earlier.

[30 minutes later] I’ve just spent twenty minutes trying to resolve this with McAfee’s online chat technical support. At the end of that whole exchange they gave me a phone number to call for Corporate Technical Support (00800 1225 5624). I’m am now on hold for five minutes trying to get them to sort it out.

[40 minutes later] I’ve been transfered to another deparment,’Digital River’, and I’m on hold again while they try to sort out the problem.

[50 minutes later] ‘Digital River’ say I have to call McAfee technical support, which is where I started. I am now calling them (on 020 794901 07).

[55 minutes later] Called that number.  Apparently I have to call a different number.  I am calling that new number (0175321 7431) now.

[58 minutes later] Apparently (unknown to me) they have sold me an upgraded product.  The CSR advised me – seriously – to cancel my order, get a refund and then wait until 19th May when the existing product licence runs out and then buy the new product.  He is now going to transfer me ‘Digital River’ (who they?) to arrange my refund.

[Over one hour later] The ‘Digital River’ people are now going to do a refund but they have to send me an email a form which I have to fill and claim my refund.  It will then, apparently take 5-7 days to process the refund.

More fool me for trying to renew my subscription early.  More fool me for buying from McAfee.  Is it any wonder that people get viruses when the anti-virus vendors are so completely user-unfriendly.

57 Responses to McAfee rip-off and so-called ‘customer service’

  1. FERGUS O'ROURKE February 15, 2007 at 2:34 pm #


    I agree with you. In the last year, McAfee has become a pest. Every two weeks or so, it sends me a message suggesting that I should update or upgrade or both. This has been happening for at least 4 months. There are still two months to go till my current sub. runs out ! I am tempted to say that I can’t wait, but the truth is that I find the virus protection very satisfactory. I have e-mailed asking McAfee to cease spamming me with, inter alia, offers of spam protection. No good. I contacted the on-line Helpdesk, or whatever they call it, recently and received sympathy but still no promise to desist.

  2. John Whiteside February 15, 2007 at 3:33 pm #

    Well at least it doesn’t do what the Norton stuff does – insinuate itself into Windows like a virus so that you can’t install it. Having spent hours tracking down their removal tool to clean the damn thing off my system (because it also sometimes just doesn’t get along with Windows and won’t install correctly – something I’ve heard from IT consultant types as well, who had the same experience as me) – I’ll never allow anything from them near a PC of mine again!

    Happily that bad experience led me to Grisoft’s AVG product, which has a free version that seems to be superior to what Macaffee and Norton are peddling….

    but you’re right, trying to keep your PC secure shouldn’t lead to being ripped off, or having your system compromised by the very software that is supposed to be protecting you.

    • Craig Fisher October 5, 2014 at 11:21 pm #

      John, the only problem I’ve found ( and it’s a doozy ) the free versions ” Seem ” to work just fine actually for quite a while but in fact what they actually do is load your system down with so much garbage it’s crazy ! Even though your scans come back clean and it say’s everything is working fine, trust me…it’s not ! For example…I had Comodo Geek Buddy and it was blocking, kicking, karate chopping viruses, spam, Trojans, you name it, it was kicking it’s butt OR SO IT SAID !!! My laptop started to slow down, overheat etc. so I took it in for a check up….378 different viruses, Trojans out the rear, malware, just everything that could go wrong went wrong. The dude told me maybe another day later and it would’ve been beyond repair !! It took over 20 hours of labor to fix it !!!! Just Sayin

  3. David Leal February 15, 2007 at 4:05 pm #

    Matthew, there are some open-source or free solutions that you can use, of the type install and forget.

    See for example, Clamwin.

    Also, there is Google Apps for Your Domain, which will collect all of your e-mail (therefore, handling the spam protection).

    If you want, drop me a mail and I’ll help you install and configure everything for free.



  4. Matthew Stibbe February 15, 2007 at 4:07 pm #

    David – thanks for the advice and offer of help. The irony is that I write a lot of security advice for Microsoft and others and I’m pretty clued up about a/v stuff. This is why McAfee’s behaviour is so frustrating – I’ve recommended them to people in my writing in the past.

    • Catherine A. Ford April 9, 2014 at 12:41 am #

      alled to see if I could cancel my renwal with McAfee and told I could not. I( paid my renewal at least a month in advance and no one will give me my actual renewal date. I am sure since I paid early that I am still in the 30 day period to cancel but no one will help me.

  5. Michael Carnell February 16, 2007 at 1:51 am #

    Another reason to switch to a Mac! Yes, I am one of those guys. Seriously though, I use a Mac for all my personal work, but I am an I.S. Manager by trade for a business running Windows servers and 99% Windows desktops. Viruses are a problem, but the anti-virus software vendors are nearly as bad. The phrase “greedy mercenaries” often comes to mind. I second the vote for Grisoft’s line of AVG products.

  6. David Bradley February 17, 2007 at 12:28 pm #

    When I was still using windows 3.1 aeons ago, it was quite useful to have McAfee’s freebie DOS antivirus, it used to fit on a single floppy disc (remember those?). Things have moved on, I first wen to f-prot, then a journalists’ sub to Sophos, but by far and away the best of the bunch is the free for home users AVG (they also offer antispyware and firewall, but I use AdAware and ZoneAlarm for that).

    Definitely worth getting AVG though.


  7. James Staut February 28, 2007 at 10:22 pm #

    I have also found McAfee to be very unhelpful over the last couple of years. However, I have found that the best way to avoid this problem is by first using prior to making a call to McAfee or any other call center. 321-CALL-LOG allows users to record their interactions over the phone with call centers; the best part is that the service announces to the agent that the call is being recording and simply with that I have found agents to be more friendly and willing to help. Check out the service at:

  8. Harold Abner March 19, 2007 at 5:43 pm #

    Does anyone know how to cancel McAfee auto renewal. I want to stop auto buying their software

  9. Amalio Carmona March 21, 2007 at 3:54 pm #

    I have the some problems with the mcafee customer service”

  10. David Bradley March 26, 2007 at 7:54 am #

    I like James’ idea of using 321-call-log, but reckon as journalists we could go one better, I’ve written a mini life hack here about confusing a call center for better service.

  11. Kurious1 April 30, 2007 at 3:47 am #

    Easiest way to stop ANY autorenewal is to never start. Once they get their little clause [pun intended - some merchants hide an autorenew in their TOS] in you you’re screwed. If you have autorenewals already signed up, stop your charge card. (It’s faster than trying to undo an autorenewal by politely asking a company. It’s also not a bad policy to change your credit card number every so often to prevent identity theft. I never let a card go more than a year without asking for a new number. AmEx, Chase and AT& T have all been great about going along with this)

    For online purchases AT&T Universal offers a ‘virtual credit card';after one time poof! it’s gone. Hackers can’t use it, either.
    Peoples! NEVER autorenew ANYTHING- inevitably you will lose. Turbo Tax is a perfect example. They quietly put me on their autorenew. I got my autorenew version a bit early- October – and then it had to be updated, and updated and updated some more. In addition, they sent me a vs I didn’t want or need – the professional TT SuperDuperDeluxe.

    RE virus protection, McAfee has become a NIGHTMARE! I was ‘autorenewed’ for a hugely more expensive ‘upgrade’ and had to fight to get my own program back. Even so -McAfee takes 15 MINUTES to load, then another 15 to scan- plus it has slowed my computer to a crawl. McAfee scrambled my registry like a blender -thank heavens I found Registry Mechanic! THAT’s an A-1 program! McAfee’s Customer Disservice is utterly useless and rude to boot.
    PCillin came w my Dell and it’s a lot better and faster – it also catches far more nasties than McAfee

    • Gina October 19, 2013 at 5:09 pm #

      That’s a good suggestion, but when I failed to provide McAfee with my new credit card info (brand new card number, NOT just an updated expiration date!) Citibank gave it to them!!! According to Citibank it’s “standard practice” to give merchants new card info “to make sure that monthly or yearly subscriptions don’t get interrupted” and there’s no way to stop them from doing it. IMO Citibank is as guilty as McAfee in this!!

  12. Dien Huynh May 30, 2007 at 11:12 am #

    I bought a Dell laptop that comes with Mcafee antivirus installed. About a year ago, my Microsoft Outlook stopped working, it happened at the time when my Mcafee lincense expired. Then I realised that Mcafee installed itself into my Outlook for scanning mail, not too happy but i didn’t think it did any harm so I went online and renewed my license and my Outlook magically worked again. Since then I sold my laptop (and uninstalled all softwares including Mcafee).

    Today out of the blue, I got an email from Mcafee team informing me that they have renewed my subscription for another year without even seeking my consent. They also advise me that if i want to cancel the subscription i have to do so within 60 days by contact their Customer Service (without telling me where/how/who).

    Reading all the posts about dealing with Mcafee Customer Service, I guess I would be in for a long long battle to retrieve my money that they STOLE.

  13. Theresa June 4, 2007 at 8:14 pm #

    YES! I thought it was just me….McAfee is a big rip-off! It should not be rocket science to fix their worthless non-working programs. The box is also false advertising—“Real People. Real Help. For Free.” Only if you can find the # to call after your computer has totally been shut down by their program immediately after install…..DUH…How can a person use the “free” tech support when your computer is now frozen? Customer service recommends the website or using their pay techical support. Why would I pay to fix THEIR issues that THEY created?? Talk about job security!! & to think our government trusts these people…because that is what they use as a anti-virus program. I told customer service to take a hike, and that I would not be spending 39.99 MORE for their worthless product. It would really be nice to just boycott both the large internet security co’s. The computer and PC Magazines should not be so ready to endorse these products or the companies and have their icons placed onto the packaging to help boost the sales of these products.

  14. Flolly July 12, 2007 at 6:47 pm #

    McAfee actually charged an expired credit card with an outdated billing address. When I looked at the invoice, they had the “new” expiration date as 12/2021. Somehow, my credit company actually accepted this blatently false information and the charge went through.

    I contacted both companies as it is clearly just unacceptable for any company to make up an expiration date on an expired card *and* my bank to actually approve the charge without being provided with accurate account information. Not. Okay.

    I purposely left the old information on my account as there was no way to opt out online and I didn’t want to argue with some call center rep about cancelling the sub. Usually just leaving the outdated credit card information will take care of the problem and the auto renew will just stop. Not so in this case!

  15. Marie September 7, 2007 at 7:12 am #

    McAfee is the biggest pain in the universe. The only thing efficient about that organization is their ability to snatch cash. (automatic renewel). The recent McAfee reconfigeration has destroyed my computer. Every attempt to get someone in the “technical service group” has resulted in more problems. The tech people I had to deal with could ALMOST speak English and from the buck passing that ensued they know very little about their products or how to solve any malfunction. I have been in limbo since 08/07/2007. The McAfee problems have created problems with Microsoft software and AOL. I am at wits end. The last interface I had with them (this evening), I was advised that there is a pay for incident number that I should call for help. SCAM SCAM SCAM. These bums should be run out of business.

  16. Robert Hayden September 26, 2007 at 9:34 pm #

    1. “Solutions’ listed in Virtual Technician do not work.
    2. McAfee tends to “re-install” upon nearly every reboot delaying internet sign-on.
    3. The Virtual Technician desktop icon only works once, then needs to be re-installed.
    4. The On-Line Chat option for technical support does not have a “submit” button so you cannot use it. What does that tell you?

  17. Dave November 9, 2007 at 11:36 pm #

    McAfee has the absolute WORST response to technical issues that I have ever seen! Their upgrades are fillled with technical issues that are self-induced by their previous software versions, their chat line is a joke, and the phone reps can’t solve the issues at ridiculous rates. Then, follow-up response from the service organization is “our next level of technical support will be required to solve this issue…WAIT 7-10 Days!” That has happened 3 times. I’m going NORTON!!!

  18. Amanda B November 21, 2007 at 2:43 pm #

    McAfee’s so-called Tech-Support is the most apalling service I’ve encountered in years! Last Friday, after spending nearly 2 hours on numerous phone calls to their Customer Service group in the Phillipines (with “barely-English” speaking individuals) the only answer I found was that all supervisors were unavailable and attending a seminar. I was told to call back on Monday which lead to more frustrating and nonexistent support.

    As others have stated, attempts at using McAfee’s online tech support is a circuitous route to NOWHERE! I’ve experienced every problem mentioned by others on this website. I’m going to make one more attempt at resolving this by leaning on Dell’s support team.

  19. natalie herman November 23, 2007 at 7:13 pm #

    a balloon opened up above the McFee sigh, said push balloon for new security. since then I have nob been able to access anything. i play bridge on line & haven’t been able to get this security off my pc.

  20. CN Yee December 7, 2007 at 10:28 am #

    I am going through a horror story with McAfee at present. This is how it goes. On Nov 12 I was charged for auto-renewal. I requested for refund, and cancellation of auto-renewal. I got my refund promptly, so I thought everything was OK.

    Then on 3 Dec I was being charged again!!! I wrote back a very angry letter and asked for refund again and for my account to be deleted. I got a reply today – assuring me that the auto-renewal is being removed, as well as my credit card details.

    I logged on to check – lo and behold – the auto-renewal status is still ON, as well my credit card details.

    I suffered exchange rate losses on each refund. I am seriously thinking of cancelling my credit card to prevent any further charges.

    This is a nightmare. This is my worst experience so far in terms of customer (dis)service.

  21. Karen Mainz December 19, 2007 at 2:21 am #

    On August 2007 I paid $64.95 for virus protection from McAfee. On December 16,2007 my computer was infect with a serious problem. McAfee informed me that I must pay more to destroy the virus. I’m confused about this company, I believe it is a scam. I will spread the word about MCAFEE To all my customers.

  22. Robert Stever December 20, 2007 at 8:18 pm #

    ((Theresa wrote:

    YES! I thought it was just me….McAfee is a big rip-off! It should not be rocket science to fix their worthless non-working programs. The box is also false advertising—”Real People. Real Help. For Free.” Only if you can find the # to call after your computer has totally been shut down by their program immediately after install…..DUH…How can a person use the “free” tech support when your computer is now frozen? Customer service recommends the website or using their pay techical support. Why would I pay to fix THEIR issues that THEY created?? Talk about job security!! & to think our government trusts these people…because that is what they use as a anti-virus program. I told customer service to take a hike, and that I would not be spending 39.99 MORE for their worthless product. It would really be nice to just boycott both the large internet security co’s. The computer and PC Magazines should not be so ready to endorse these products or the companies and have their icons placed onto the packaging to help boost the sales of these products.))

    I work for the US Government, we don’t use any ant virus programs. None of them are secure. Instead we have a 2048bit encrypted router that only sends (cannot receive on most machines). We have 200+ PC’s where I work and only 1 PC can actually receive data. So before a web page is loaded it must pass through someone with physical hands and eyes to tell what is gong on.

  23. Dave July 30, 2008 at 4:33 pm #

    Yep, Dig this:
    I get a an offer for a years subription at 33% off. Yea right I bought it for 34.99 and they charged my CC 72 bucks!
    Called some foreign guy they refunded that and agreed to honor 34.99 for the subsciption, checked CC today the charge was almost 73.00
    Dont do it, these guys are crooks wouldnt be soooo bad but they did the same thing last year, live and learn at YOUR expense! Thanks 4 nothing Mcafee!

  24. Tom Buur February 14, 2009 at 3:44 pm #

    Another one here who has become a McAfee hater during the year I have used their software. Like others here I have been spammed regularly by McAfee. Today I received an automatic update notice. But can I turn off this update thing? No. customer service has to do that for me, just to make things as difficult for me as possible. Their help system is a mess taking you in circles. Add to that that McAfee blocks my computer work all the time. Everytime I open my laptop it wants to update the virus program, cancel or postpone does not work. The next time I open the laptop it starts all over again. Alternatively, McAfee automatically downloads updates slowing down my pc when all I want is to check a few emails or so … Never ever McAfee again. I will most likely go back to Norton.

  25. Louis Molnar February 18, 2009 at 3:15 pm #

    McAfee is worst than a virus. You cant get red of them, you cannot turn them off, they notify you that your subscription has expired, three month after you have renewed it, when you complain they tell you that part of your
    virus protection has expired etc. We need to start an internet movement against these crooks.

  26. jimmy mack February 28, 2009 at 7:24 pm #

    Do not buy mcafee or uniblue beacuse this a rip off.

  27. henderson April 27, 2009 at 6:53 pm #

    Want to laugh? Here is a perfect example of why we shouldn’t be compartmentalizing our customer service to offshore service departments. I have been trying for a month & a half to get a new CD of McAfee Total Protection replaced. The orginal CD was corrupt & wouldn’t fully load. McAfee won’t let you download the software, if you purchased a CD. You have to get a replacement CD. That wouldn’t be so bad, except you fax in your proof of purchase & product info and then nothing happens. Then I waited a week, and contacted customer service again. Even went up from Tier 1 to Tier 2 support. Got a SUPERVISOR! They again told me to fax in my info for a replacement CD. This time I faxed it, but I ran the entire three page fax through the machine about 5 times, so they were sure to get it on the other end. RESULTS!!! I get a call saying that they received my fax and will ship a replacement CD. FALSE ALARM!!! After waiting almost a month, no CD! So here’s an excerpt from my next communication with another Tier 2 “Supervisor”, who is AGAIN telling me that I need to fax in my information! This is just ridiculous! (Note that I was intentionally repeating my entries in order to emphasize that the “Supervisor” was not getting the point, or was not reading my entries. Also note the broken english when the “Supervisor” is forced to abandon the “canned” answers and actually produce a typed response.)
    Here is an excerpt, after things are starting to get repetative;

    Customer: Is there a Tier 3 that I can go to, so that I can have one single person with the authority and power to completely resolve this issue, w/out continued faxes and communications with additional departments or individuals? I can e-mail a copy of my reciept, a photo of the box, UPC and CD, but I am unable to fax @ the current time. Would have to fax tonight @ the earliest.
    Gopi: Please give me a moment to research your issue. Thank you for your patience.
    Customer: When I finish this chat, I want to be DONE with the issue. I have had previous promises that the CD would ship in a week; in 10 days. I have had numerous conversations and service #’s. I have faxed my info to your number multiple times over a week and a half. I have had confirmation that the fax was recieved and the CD was shipping. I DO NOT WANT TO HAVE TO EXPLAIN THIS TO YET ANOTHER REPRESENTATIVE! If you can’t resolve the issue I would like to speak to a Higher Level Supervisor. I do not want to finish this chat and have to start the process again next week, due to lack of follow through on McAfee’s part. As you can see from the history, I have done everything requested and have repeatedly been left hanging by inept service on the part of McAfee. I refuse to go around this process yet again. It has been OVER A MONTH since I brought this to your company’s attention. Someone there must have the power to resolve the issue.
    Gopi: I completely understand your frustration and would be more than happy to help you.
    Customer: Take your time. I ask that you read COMPLETELY all previous communications and chats from ALL service #’s. Then you tell me, in all honesty, that I should do more to resolve this situation. Tell me, with all honesty, that I should spend more time on this issue, that I should trust it to be resolved if I just fax my info to the number you gave me.
    Gopi: (Customer Name Replaced), Fax team is a separate department and we do not have an option to access the data belongs to them. I will help you extend the current subscription for another 30 days in order to provide uninterrupted protection. I suggest you to fax once again the proof of purchas alone to the Fax number that we have provided earlier.
    Gopi: Once, they received your fax message, they will extend your account for one more year and send you the confirmation email.
    Gopi: Please bear with us for the inconvenience.
    Customer: FAX departement has FAILED to follow through when I have fax MULTIPLE TIMES over a week and a half timeframe. FAX department assured me that they had recieved fax and would send out the CD. FAX departement has been USELESS WASTE of time and long distance charges!
    Gopi: I have extended your subscription for 30 days and your account is valid for another 30 days from today.
    Customer: Have you read ALL previous communications associated with this case? DO YOU HAVE A SUPERVISOR?
    Gopi: I do understand your concern. Please fax your proof of purchase once again in order to extend the subscription for one more year.
    Customer: What is the status of my first 5 faxes?
    Customer: What is the status of my first 5 faxes?
    Customer: What is the status of my first 5 faxes?
    Gopi: I really apologize for the inconvenience. Please send it for once and your issue will be surely resolved.
    Customer: If my previous FAXES have not resulted in a response, why should I continue to fax? I am spending money on long distance calls, just to find myself back here chatting with someone who can only respond that I need to fax the info back to the department that I am notifying you DID NOT RESPOND!
    Customer: My point in contacting you is to complain that the FAX DEPARTMENT HAS FAILED MULTIPLE TIMES TO FOLLOW THROUGH WITH A RESPONSE AND YOUR RESOLUTION IS TO HAVE ME FAX TO THAT VERY DEPARTMENT? Do you understand the irony? Do you understand how this makes no sense?
    Gopi: I can really understand your concern and your level of frustration.
    Customer: My point in contacting you is to complain that the FAX DEPARTMENT HAS FAILED MULTIPLE TIMES TO FOLLOW THROUGH WITH A RESPONSE AND YOUR RESOLUTION IS TO HAVE ME FAX TO THAT VERY DEPARTMENT? Do you understand the irony? Do you understand how this makes no sense?
    Customer: My point in contacting you is to complain that the FAX DEPARTMENT HAS FAILED MULTIPLE TIMES TO FOLLOW THROUGH WITH A RESPONSE AND YOUR RESOLUTION IS TO HAVE ME FAX TO THAT VERY DEPARTMENT? Do you understand the irony? Do you understand how this makes no sense?
    Customer: My point in contacting you is to complain that the FAX DEPARTMENT HAS FAILED MULTIPLE TIMES TO FOLLOW THROUGH WITH A RESPONSE AND YOUR RESOLUTION IS TO HAVE ME FAX TO THAT VERY DEPARTMENT? Do you understand the irony? Do you understand how this makes no sense?
    Customer: My point in contacting you is to complain that the FAX DEPARTMENT HAS FAILED MULTIPLE TIMES TO FOLLOW THROUGH WITH A RESPONSE AND YOUR RESOLUTION IS TO HAVE ME FAX TO THAT VERY DEPARTMENT? Do you understand the irony? Do you understand how this makes no sense?
    Customer: PLEASE READ THIS and don’t give me a canned, pretyped response: My point in contacting you is to complain that the FAX DEPARTMENT HAS FAILED MULTIPLE TIMES TO FOLLOW THROUGH WITH A RESPONSE AND YOUR RESOLUTION IS TO HAVE ME FAX TO THAT VERY DEPARTMENT? Do you understand the irony? Do you understand how this makes no sense?
    Gopi: I will make a note of this case about your inconvenience. Please fax the same once again so that they will do the necessary action for you.
    Customer: My complaint is ABOUT the fax department. Do you understand that? Do you understand that I am contacting you to tell you that the FAX department has not worked?!?!?!
    Gopi: I can understand your concern and really sorry for not resolving your issue.
    Gopi: If I can able to see the fax messages that you have sent earlier, I will surely extend the subscription now itself.
    Customer: WHAT? Please resend your request in a way that I can understand. Do you want a copy of my reciept?
    Gopi: Yes, you are correct. Please send the copy of your purchase receipt so that, your account will be extended, once we received it.
    Customer: I already told you earlier in this chat: “I can e-mail a copy of my reciept, a photo of the box, UPC and CD,…” What e-mail would you like me to send it to so that YOU can resolve this issue?
    Customer: If you tell me to fax it, I will have to admit that I am jsut simply dealing with an incompetent individual who has no real understanding of anything we have discussed.
    Gopi: We do not want you to send an email, just send the purchase receipt to the Fax number 972-963-7485 along with this case Id in order to resolve the issue.
    Customer: Ahah! My point exactly! You are completely clueless aren’t you?
    Customer: DO YOU HAVE A SUPERVISOR? I would like to chat with someone of at least average intelligence now! Please forward me to such an individual.
    Gopi: I am sorry, (Customer Name Replaced). Based on your issue, I will need to escalate this case to our Tier 3 customer service team. Please provide me your contact number and the most convenient time of day for you to receive a call back. Our escalation team will get in touch within the next 7 business days.
    Customer: Holy Crap! You finally got it! My number is the same as the one I gave to initiate the chat, but seeing who i am dealing with, I will provide it again here. It is (Customer # Replaced). I will wait for the call. In the meantime, I will find an funny site to post this ridiculous conversation on.
    Gopi: Thank you for the information.
    Gopi: Your Service Request number for this chat session is *********. You can quote this number in your further contacts.
    Gopi: Is there anything else I may assist you with?
    Customer: I seriously don’t think you have the ability!

  28. BeeBee September 1, 2009 at 4:31 am #

    I hate Mcafee with a passion. The program destroyed my computer. I’ve tried to explain to Mcafee reps over and over again that I need my computer and that I don’t have unlimited time to sit and be transferred from one represenative to another trying uselessly to resolve my issue.I spoke to about 20 of them through chat
    a nd also finally got one of them to waive the fee for $$ paid techinical support. I”m really glad I didn’t pay for it because whatever that “tech support” person did completely demolished my computer. Then, she told me to update my windows and hung up the phone. Thanks to Mcafee, Nothing works or starts save for the Mcafee security center that says “YOu are not fully protected”. What’s most irritating is that the useless Mcafee tech support tries to blame the problems caused by their program on Microsoft, Internet Explorer, Itunes, AIM,Wireless Internet etc. After I wasted 5 hours trying toing to resolve the issue with them they told me to go contact microsoft.

    This is what happened: My computer was acting perfectly normal. I had NO problems with it. I take good care of it. It never freezes, I rarely get errors etc etc. Then, out of the blue, a Mcafee error pops up. I restarted. More and more Mcafee errors pop up. Every 5 minutes a new McAfee error was on my screen. I contacted support once, twice, three, four, five etc times. They had me uninstall and reinstall it. That only made things worse as the program installed with errors. Mcafee corrupted my system files by marking them viruses. Things stopped working on my computer. It became useless.

    Mcafee techs either could not understand the issue entirely or they ignored half of what I was telling them. In any case, nothign they did was of any use and they knew it. I asked to speak to supervisors and they pretended no sueprvisors were around. They tried to get me to pay $69.99 to fix what their program had done. I could not make the reps understand that if I only visit McAfee secure sites and make sure that when the program was actually working the virus protection was always enabled that there is obviously something not right with the program if it is telling me that I have 12 Trojans.

  29. Jerry Naylon October 31, 2009 at 5:48 am #

    McAfee spends more time online than I do. I had to go to Kim Komando’s site to get a program to help me get it off my hard drive. I did and I switched to Avast Antivirus Program. It’s way better and way more user friendly and has great reveiws and great customer service. I just love it, Thank You Avast for being FREE and so GOOD!

  30. L.E.webster February 4, 2010 at 7:16 pm #

    I just spent 40 minutes on customer service to be told I must phone back tomorow the department I need is closed, I phoned during the opening time! at 5.15 pm,was transferrede 7 times because they were incompetent in dealing with the problem, put on hold 8 times! to my annoyance made me end call and call a different department who transferred me to the first dept I spoke with! Problem not resolved got to fax and ring them back tomorrow Nightnare Customer Service…ARGGGGHHH….

    • Matthew Stibbe February 4, 2010 at 9:36 pm #

      I’m sorry you had such a bad time of it. Seems pretty consistent with my experience. My thought is that it must cost them as much to shuffle you around from department to department as it does to solve your problem efficiently so why do they do it?

  31. Krista Miles February 11, 2010 at 10:01 pm #

    A company is only as good as their customer service. A McAfee rep talked me into uninstalling my 3-computer license by telephone and said another rep would call me to walk me through the re-installation. That was 2 days ago. Meanwhile if I try to reinstall after using their “uninstall” tool, their literature says it may invalidate my license. Where did customer service go? My McAfee license was on 4 months old and now I have no protection. “A Grandmother”

  32. Eddie April 13, 2010 at 9:33 pm #

    MCafee is trying to put my elderly father offline!
    You think you’ve got problems? McAfee have screwed up my subscriptions so royally that my elderly father – who has just got his first PC – is going to have to give up. I set up his PC then flew 400 miles to deliver it to him. Now I face the prospect of another 800-mile round trip and 2 days off work without pay to uninstall McAfee and put a decent anti-virus product on it! I’ve been fighting this particular battle for 3 weeks with no success. Apparently MCafee think that elderly new users are goinbg to be savvy enough to cope with remote support. Try telling that to an almost-80-year old who has only jsut learned to switch his PC on! Shame on you MCafee!!!! Toshiba, please note- it’s because it was a trial product on your laptops that I bought McAfee in the first place- why do you bother with them?

    • Matthew Stibbe April 14, 2010 at 6:32 am #

      It’s really annoying isn’t it. Lots of my friends and family have these big bloatware security suites on their computer which are really intrusive and take up lots of memory. I have a much more discrete corporate-focused anti-virus/spyware program which doesn’t get in the way at all and costs a lot less. I don’t have to deal with McAfee who have let me down several times with technical support (not just for A/V but also for an online crypto key recovery service for which they took three payments without actually renewing the service). You’re better off with someone else but I’m sorry you have had to do so much travel to get there.

      • Nithin January 7, 2011 at 8:46 am #

        Hello Matthew Stibbe, Just to inform you that McAfee
        Support process is out sourced to India and i was working with it.
        I have seen lots of customers going blind buying this dum anti
        virus with no proper support because of cost cutting the company
        decided to hire uneducated peoples and teach them how to do it. I
        under stand the problem you were facing but looking at all this. I
        just quit my job there. Kindly don buy McAfee and suffer my request
        for u. Thank you, Nithin.S

  33. barbara May 8, 2010 at 9:54 pm #

    I was ripoff by mcafee. I have a budget acer computer with
    a dial up connection. We live in the country and satellite is to
    expense at this point. My antivirus software was expiring so
    I decide to try mcafee. They took my money and sent me a link to
    download the software. It would not download. I tried to contact
    them and receive no response to an email. When I finally did they
    said that it had been over 30 days and they will not send me a
    refund. BIG RIPOFF. I will never buy a mcafee product or a
    computer that has mcafee

  34. jmdeur August 4, 2010 at 7:28 pm #

    Well, I’ve had McAfee antivirus products installed on various systems for around 10 years. Up until today, they’ve worked – more or less. This morning I noticed that one machine was really chugging away – one CPU was at 100% and temperatures had risen to pretty high levels – 100 C at this CPU’s location in the box. I shut down Powerpoint – which usually drives this machine crazy like this, but no effect. So, I shut down everything – still nothing, so I started task manager and saw the McAfee Total Protection Service (or whatever its called) was the problem. I tried to open its console, but it wouldn’t open. I rebooted the machine, but TPS was still hogging resources and heating things up to unreasonable levels. I called McAfee gold label (or whatever they call it) support and after 30 minutes talked to some guy who spoke broken English who explained that there was some new bug that they were working to fix and it would automatically (presumably through the auto update feature) fix itself. Since my head was hurting from talking to this guy, I signed off. After a few minutes, I decided it might be a good idea to shut TPS off before it fried something (no worries about protection, as McAfee site advisor told me that I wasn’t being protected by the runaway TPS anyway), so I called tech support again. After another half-hour, some other technician gave me a command to terminate TPS (not prevent it loading like I’d asked, so his comprehension of English matched his speaking ability of it – okay, my English isnt’ most good either. I fired off this command – after about 30 minutes I gave up watching it and left for an appointment. Four hours later I came back to see a message that the command had given up and that it was unsuccessful in shutting down TPS. So, another call to support – after 30 minutes, a tech answered and immediately hung up. Another call and after 30 minutes on hold – I hung up. I finally took matters into my own hands and launched task manager and started shutting off McAfee things until TPS stopped. Temps dropped to normal immediately, and CPU utilization dropped to 3%. Now, I have to go find a replacement for this crappy piece of software – oh, McAfee you can refund my subscription and repay me for the two hours of my time that you wasted today. I know, I’m also going to buy a parka for the cold wave that’s going to hit tomorrow (it’s currently 95 outside)

  35. Deirdre O'Riordan September 25, 2010 at 10:00 pm #

    Finally I have found a group of people who are just as disatisfied with McAfee as I am!! Approx 6 weeks ago I renewed my subscription and upgraded to their lates protection ‘Suite’ Since then I have sent 6 e-mails to 6 different individuals in their so called ‘customer service’ dept because each mail I send is answered by someone new!! 8 times I have been on the online tech support…my issue has been twice escalated to tier 2 and twice been escalated to tier 3…8 times they have uninstalled and reinstalled the product despite the fact that I have told each one of the tech agents that doing that will not rectify the problem, which is 24 hours after the product is installed, when I click on it to start it up all I get is a blank white rectangle in the middle of my screen. Also I placed all of my files from my past years work on my Doctorate in the McAfee vault which came as part of the ‘Suite’ but when they uninstalled the product they lost all my data which unfortunately I didnt have back up anywhere ( but that is another story!) I am at my wits end at this stage…all I want is someone who can speak an acceptable level of English and enough technical knowledge so that I can communicate my problem to them and maybe they will be able to find a solution!!! Is that too much to ask??? I am beyond furious at this stage…I tried Kaspersky but it seriously messed up my computer and I havent heard very good reports about Norton either so I am at a loss as to where to go from here with regard to adequate protection online.

  36. blake edwards October 29, 2010 at 2:21 am #

    Yes Mcafee auto renewal scam

    I was victim to this too. My anti virus cover expired with them on the 21st October 2010 but the credit card i used to purchase the software with them expired in August 2010. They sent me at least 10 emails to say that my credit card for auto renewal was going to expire before the 21st October 2010 and that i should supply them with my new card details to avoid interuption of the service.

    I did not do this as i did not require the service!!

    However the cheeky buggers assumed that the replacement card would have the same card number (normal) and guessed a new expiry date and charged me without my authorisation. Is this legal? I doubt it!!

  37. Terry Goins January 8, 2011 at 8:02 pm #


  38. Terry June 7, 2011 at 9:07 pm #

    I recently got an email saying I was automatically signed up fo a MACAFEE renewal and billed $79.99. All without my knowledge and approval. They said to cancel I had to turn off the automatic renewal within 30 days. However, I did that but it does not cancel the charge. To cancel the charge you have to call customer service. I only noticed I was still getting billed because I checked my credit card ststement on line. MACAFEE just made me a Norton Customer. MACAFEE can go fly a kite.

  39. Jase June 10, 2011 at 12:47 am #

    I have had nothing but trouble from McAfee for several years now. The very nice but totally incapable service centers in India are a huge issue. Basic communication and understanding of the problem is at the core. The most recent migration to MX Logic SaaS protection has now made a bad service issue unbearable since India has no clue about the new technology and even the local guys in Colorado want to blame someone else for the new problems. Refund request have to go to Philippines and of course they say that I am just beyond the time period to cancel my 2 year subscription but they will cancel the auto renewal. 5 months into a 2 yr contract but only one month since SaaS conversion and hours of time spent trying to get working and thousands of lost company dollars. False positives, missed spam everywhere, total legitimate blocked emails and the list goes on. The company size due to acquisitions and out-sourcing customer service has made McAfee a very bad choice.

  40. Larry June 12, 2011 at 7:49 pm #

    Just bought and installed McAfee internet security 2011 3 user on the 1st. One of the three computers is on a constant reboot, another allows popups, antivirus 2011 etc. I have chatted with customer service three times since I installed their software. I get the same responses as they have certain answers to what you say from 1 to 0. When you get to 0 they ask if they helped. I threw a curve and asked one last question as I knew the names of the representatives were foreign. I said I can see by the names McAfee outsources and asked where they are based. The representative wrote back saying southern India. The only solution they have is to give them another $90.00 for them to fix what I already paid them to take care of. Never again with McAfee.

  41. Peter Thijs April 4, 2012 at 9:58 pm #

    Is McAfee malware?
    McAfee charged my bank-account without my permission. How is this possible?
    How to get rid of McAfee? Can somebody give some advise?

  42. Neil B. May 5, 2012 at 10:33 pm #

    Beware the scumbags at claiming to be the customer service representatives for McAfee. They did take away the obnoxious McAfee pop-up that would not go away, but only after they scammed me for $299. I am absolutely convinced that they are the ones who generated it in the first place. After installing their software, it kept popping up and interfering with my regular word processing, so I bit the bullet and just uninstalled their software. Since then, the number of spam solicitations getting through my spam filter has literally increased 1,000 fold. It appears to me that the scumbags collected enough info from my computer while they had control of it (that was the “only way” for them to be able to get rid of the obnoxious McAfee pop-up) to now sell not only my email address, but the codes needed to defeat my spam filter. After this experience, I will DEFINITELY not allow any “customer service” sub-contractor to take control of my computer. I have also contacted McAfee for their input, but as mentioned above, trying to get to real customer service people has been ridiculously difficult. I have, as a result, written to their corporate headquarters directly

  43. Scott Gemberling August 25, 2012 at 5:46 am #

    McAfee just did the same thing to me. Thieves are always looking for new ways to steal.

  44. Marian May 4, 2013 at 5:07 am #

    I bought a Dell laptop that came with McAfee. Despite bad experiences with them in the past, I stuck with them. I hate changing security vendors, because you have to uninstall your existing security program before installing the new one (that’s right, isn’t it?), and that leaves you vulnerable for enough time to get a virus.

    Yesterday I got a McAfee alert that I had no internet protection. I guess everyone knows how scary that is. I keep a record of when my products expire. I still have 2 years to go, as I took advantage of a greatly discounted 3-year plan. But that alarm kept coming up. I emailed their customer service and got no reply, even the customary “we got your message and…” I don’t have a land line and didn’t want to use my cell phone and be on hold forever and use up my pre-paid minutes.

    Finally, I gave in and paid about $32 for the product that I already have, unless it was another product disguised as what I already have. The warning still didn’t go away, even after a restart. I emailed them again No answer, of course. Finally the warning went away. I emailed them again to ask if they didn’t think that they had just charged me $32 for an update. No answer. So they’ve just ripped me off. And I know that they’ll do it again.

    I’m so annoyed that next time they do it, I’m changing to another vendor. There are free products out there that get better reviews than McAfee and Norton (don’t get me started!), so I guess we really have no excuse to complain. But venting has some value, anyway.

    And now at least I don’t feel so alone.


  45. Dom August 1, 2013 at 8:45 pm #

    My Girlfriend had McAfee on her viao net-book for a couple of years, it was the version that came with the net-book and we foolishly renewed the licence once the trail had run out.

    A year later the license ran out again we got an email telling us that our card had expired and that we needed to update our details otherwise our subscription would not renew. That was cool though because since then I’d removed it from the system and gone with a free version of something else, (which may I add brought the net-book back to life).

    Any roads, a couple of months later we got an email stating that our subscription had been renewed and an amount of £60 had been debited from our account??

    I didn’t pursue how they had managed to do this or demand it back because at the time I was dealing with Anglo Pacific loosing my belongings. Six months on my own virus software expires and I think well I’ve got 3 McAfee licenses doing nothing I’ll install one of those, since then my core i5 laptop and been as rough as guts.

  46. Gisli Jon July 17, 2014 at 12:44 pm #

    Yes McAfee is a pest

    I can’t cancel the “Auto-Renewal” McAfee Internet Security.

    Even when my VISA card expierd this year. “Somehow” they found and used the code on my new VISA card and “Auto-Renewed” the subscription.

    I think this is criminal.

  47. Mederose Mente August 17, 2014 at 11:53 pm #

    This is bad news–especially for a well-known tech player like McAfee. We do hope they can do something to fix their name. No matter how good their product is, if their tech support service is crappy, then they can go under any time.


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