Scammed by McAfee

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Steve
I've just bought new laptop. I pay a monthly sub to BT for McAfee on up to 15 machines. I tried to install my McAfee virus protect from my BT link, it wouldn't work, I rang BT tech dept and instead of talking to their tech dept I was directed straight to a customer service advisor at McAfee. He said he had to take control of my machine and said I needed software for a year on top of the free intro 30 day McAfee software on the new machine.

I couldn't be arsed to argue, so he set up a Paypal payment for £29.99, I paid with a credit card via Paypal. I was still getting pop up boxes warning of the countdown days before the trial runs out, so I contacted McAfee - they said I had indeed talked to an advisor and he had told me to contact BT, which is a lie. They had no knowledge of any payment. I've been scammed! It's not the amount, but it's knowing someone has taken control at some point of my machine.

I've since filed a request to Paypal for the money back, cancelled my credit card, changed all my passwords, given both McAfee and BT a piece of my mind....and just returned the PC to PC World for a factory reset (which they're doing for free - good on them), just in case an undetectable bug has been left on the machine.

There's a certain irony that a scammer works for one of the biggest security software companies in the world.
 

sprocket87

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This is an extremely common scam tactic which, if I had to bet, I would say had nothing to do with McAfee. The person you talked to who remote accessed your PC and charged you the $29 fee was almost certainly not a McAffee employee. Who was the biller on the PayPal receipt?
 
Joined
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Steve
This is an extremely common scam tactic which, if I had to bet, I would say had nothing to do with McAfee. The person you talked to who remote accessed your PC and charged you the $29 fee was almost certainly not a McAffee employee. Who was the biller on the PayPal receipt?
globalworldservicesltd

McAfee had a record of him speaking to me, and I had a follow up survey form relating to my conversation. I didn't use any links, I was diverted directly there by BT via a landline.

I'm sure I was diverted somewhere along the line, but I don't know where.
 
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Chris
Maybe the factory reset will skip the 30 day trial. I classed myself as reasonably careful, obviously I have a few flaws to iron out in my head :) I'll just go with Windows Defender I think.

I have 7 PCs in the house with the Family. I am the reluctant sys admin who sets them up.

I always delete these type of things before anything else is loaded. Complete strip down to the bare minimum. Office trials, virus checks, etc.

Have been using solely the free and included MS windows defender (or whatever they call it) for years now and things have been fine. I am pretty careful but my kids are not so it must be doing a good job.
 

tkbslc

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Windows Defender is based on Microsoft's corporate antivirus solution used by thousands of huge business. It's been built into windows for about 10 years now. There is no evidence that buying additional virus protection software is beneficial. There is plenty of evidence that many of them cause headaches on your system and near impossible to remove, though!

IN short, stop paying and just use the built in defender. It will never nag you or ask you for more money.
 
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Just had a call from PC World, the machine's ready. I'll take out the McAfee and rely on Windows defender. Think I'll also remove McAfee from my other machines and also let them revert to WD. It'll save me £48 a year, which I can spend on something else. All I wanted was an IPS screen for my lappy and I've had a bundle of grief instead.

High tide tomorrow, think I'll give my P filters a go with some long exposures :)
 

JensM

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As screename
I ran Muckfee and was somewhat happy, untill the machine was hardly moving at all. Checked with the IT fellows at work, was told to download and run Avast, which detected quite a bit of shit on the machine. Now I have a paid subscription on Avast and no problems...
 

felipegeek

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As an IT professional I could not recommend Avast. I used them with clients in the 2003-2010 range then because it was low-impact and effective; however, they just kept adding unnecessary "features" much the same way Norton and McAfee in the years before their rise. In the recent versions of Windows 10 (1709/1803/1809) the built in Windows Defender product is pretty good. They added all of the protections that the Microsoft "EMET" tool had to reduce various types of exploits. Additionally under "Windows Defender Security Center" -> "Device security" you can see and enable advanced features supported by your particular hardware. Of course, newer systems have more of those features.

For commercial but free product versions Bitdefender Free and Avira Free are both solid AV products without baggage. Of course, there are pop-ups every once in a while with a promo to buy a paid version with more features. Setting up basic content filtering with OpenDNS as your DNS service on your home router instead of your local ISP will help block some malicious sites. For more control and better protection an OpenDNS Home account at $20 a year gives you filtering of various types of content based on categories to reduce the chances of ending up the wrong places. You can set exclusions for specific sites if they were blocked but need to use it. Some commercial AV products also have their own in-line content filtering/malicious site blocking features.

As far as the OP, I have had to cleanup after these types of scams numerous times, mostly by referral but some were existing clients that decided to fix something on their own without consulting me to be sure they were on the right path. This mostly applied to printer and 3rd party software issues. The real problem is how polluted with scams the search results about technology products are. Bad guys can run ads all day with stolen money and have their own sophisticated SEO operations to get themselves in general search results. The best thing is to NOT search and instead go straight to the company's website ie. www.microsoft.com, www.hp.com, www.mcafee.com. If it's a little known company or you are not sure about the address scrutinize the search results and their summaries before clicking through.
 

pellicle

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MacAfee is no longer affiliated. He sold the company. He doesn't recommend their products. Basically says they are useless.
yep ... but did you like the video?

I use Free Avast and never have problems w/viruses or hacks.
I've used nothing other than common sense (don't open sus attachments, don't go to sus sites) and windows defender (cos like I'm fukken stuck with that anway) and I've not had any virus on my computer since the 90's
 

pellicle

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There is no evidence that buying additional virus protection software is beneficial. There is plenty of evidence that many of them cause headaches on your system and near impossible to remove, though!
yep ... and have been known (in addition to sucking system resources) to conflict with each other and corrupt files. Personally I just gave up and went with Defender ever since I moved away from XP
 
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