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Extremely unhappy with Mcafee sharp practise

I am extremely unhappy with Mcafee:

  • Months before my subscription was due I was bombarded with reminders and offers.
  • After complaining about this - and being offered a small price reduction for the inconvenience - I thought that I had switched off automatic renewal, but must have been mistaken.
  • The price reduction evaporated.
  • My renewal is due on 14 March.
  • On FEBRUARY 12 Mcafee automatically renewed my subscription - 2 months early.
  • I did not notice this in my email in box - it was simply overlooked as yet more JUNK MAIL from Mcafee.
  • I have been charged $79.99 - which is SIGNIFICANTLY more than I can obtain Mcafee from the UK Mcafee Store.
  • The price hike since 2009 has been almost double for renewals.
  • Fresh purchases can be obtained 30% cheaper than the renewal cost (depending on current offers and the time of day or wind direction).
  • Trying to get online help is tortuous: the website would not accept my telephone number and other obstacles.

I have requested that my subscription is cancelled under the 60 refund policy - I hope this will be done promptly. But I will make a formal complaint to my credit card company about  Mcafee's rather underhand trick of grabbing my money months before renewal and without my express authorisation.

I cannot remove my credit card details from my user account/profile. I believe that this is illegal in the E.U. I am in the UK.

However, my confidence in Mcafee as a business is severely shaken.  Technical help remains good, but tactics bordering on sharp commercial practise disgust me.

As they say - buyer beware - this seems now to apply to a hitherto honorable company.

Signed "Disgusted of Tunbridge Wells"

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6 Replies

Extremely unhappy with Mcafee sharp practise

Ooops - one month early, not two - but it's still not acceptable.

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Level 16

Re: Extremely unhappy with Mcafee sharp practise

Sorry for  the inconvenience caused here, but I would like to express the fact regarding the Auto-renewal process of McAfee otherwise called Always On protection . McAfee software that is purchased as a subscription includes the auto renewal feature. This feature ensures your virus protection is not interrupted. Without the auto-renewal feature, you would be left unprotected when your license expires. This information is disclosed on the website at the time of purchase.

When will my subscription be renewed?

Your subscription will be automatically renewed 30 days before its expiration date at the current renewal rate, and billed to the credit card on file for your account.

You will receive a confirmation of the transaction via email.

Why does McAfee use auto-renewal?

McAfee implemented the auto-renewal service after a majority of McAfee customers indicated that they prefer to have their license renewed automatically rather than having to manually re-purchase the subscription each year.

The auto-renewal feature can be turned off at any time.

To cancel the automatic renewal, do the following:

  1. Open a web browser and go to:
  2. Click Log In.
  3. Type the email address and password you used when you originally purchased your McAfee Software.
  4. Click Log In.
  5. Under the My Account menu on the left, click My Auto-Renewal Settings.
  6. To disable Auto-Renewal, click Turn Off.

Hope the above information was clear, & only according to which the subscriptions were renewed (as you said 1 month before)  & please feel free to revert back for  any clarificatins around the same. Or on any other issues, you can always click on Useful links at the top of this page and get connected to our technical support or Customer service technicians accordingly.


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Level 12

Extremely unhappy with Mcafee sharp practise

I've moved this to our "My Account" online area, and notified our Customer Service team of your displeasure.

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Extremely unhappy with Mcafee sharp practise


I am pleased to say that Mcafee very quickly refunded my subscription under the 60 day option. In fact ,this was virtually immediate and to be honest caught me 'on the back foot'. The aopology for inconvenience, and so forth, was accompanied by an offer of a reduced  - I would say more realistic and very fair - subscription price which I am happy to accept.

To be fair, the prompt action is reassuring. However, it does leave several outstanding issues which Mcafee really must address, namely:

  • excessive junk mail and pop-ups concerning renewals - these do not help
  • the use of automatic renewal as the default state - this is not acceptable and is generally considered unacceptable in much E.U. legislation
  • the unnecessarily early collection of renewal subscriptions - this certainly caught me out
  • the inflated and unfair pricing of renewals - this is technically termed 'a rip-off'

Singly those points are quite important, but taken together they virtually amount to pretty 'sharp practise' if not exactly a scam.

The bottom line is that Mcafee have a great product and provide a great service; it is let down by a number of poor practices. Fixing issues after they arise is more costly, to all concerned, than getting it right in the first place. I hope lessons will be learned.


Level 7

Re: Extremely unhappy with Mcafee sharp practise

For the last two years I've had a security subscription with AVG.  It expired recently and then I get a renewal notification from McCaffee, which I had previously used.  Clearly M sniffed my machine, saw the expiration and plunged in, pillaging my credit card for $85.    What thieves!!!  I will fight this and will NEVER use this company for security.  They are protectors?   No,  I need protection FROM them.   

Apparently there is an auto renewal box which defaults to yes and which I did not set to no.  But it is buried in fine print.  Clearly intended to deceive.

I am disgusted by this company 

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Level 20

Re: Extremely unhappy with Mcafee sharp practise

You can get a refund easily Please read

If you do stay you can cancel the auto renewal

Make sure you were not charged in the past 2 years as I never heard of mcafee seeing your other AV was expired and plunging in . I would assume the account was active for the 2 years. Just my feeling. Ask chat.

Also the auto renewal is easy to see near the top of the renewal paragraph but who reads these eulas?

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