Since 2007 and you've just noticed? I know how you feel as I've been dinged unexpectedly in the past by other organizations, but always check your credit card statements carefully. Also always read the fine print when you pay for something.
The EULA you agreed to when you first signed on points out that renewal is automatic unless you go into your account and turn it off. (Section 13 paras 3 and 4).
That said, Customer Service will turn renewal off for you if you call them at 1-866-622-3911 between 6am - 6pm Pacific Time.
They will also refund charges but only within (I believe) 60 days of the billing date.
BTW if you substitute just about any brand that has a subscription servce into Google you'll find it's a common complaint.
I'm inclined to agree with you that it should be off unless you specify, rather than on. But consumer law allows it.
Hiding a financial commitment in Section 13 of the EULA is not exactly transparent marketing, and the fact that other companies do this is no excuse. Yes, everyone should look at their CC statements, but it shouldn't come to that. I would argue that McAfee's practices are designed to maximize renewal at the expense of the customer's actual needs. I'm not alone on this either.
The law may allow opt-out, but an ethical company would make the process far more transparent.
Well our Government perhaps should enact such legislation. I would be all for it.
Note I'm only a volunteer here.