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TD and Free McAfee

So I kept noticing on the On Line TD Banking home page a mention of protecting your computer with McAfee, and on Saturday I investigated further. The short answer is: yes, it does seem that they are giving away McAfee Anti-Virus if you are a TD client. I haven’t actually installed the “Free” software, but I have registered for it, and it does seem to be a real copy of the software (if anyone has done this, please leave me a comment on your experience).

At first blush this is a bit annoying (for me) if it is a real copy of the software, as I have already updated my software (now I got it very cheap on sale, but I still paid money, for something I could have received for free which always annoys me). No Alanis that is not Ironic, just really annoying.

The second thing that I noticed was that after I registered the software with my existing McAfee account, this “Free” software asked me to update my credit card information (since I let it lapse), and the “Free” subscription would not allow me to continue until I gave a valid credit card number with a valid expiration date. This seems odd to me since I am not paying for this “Free” software, so why do they need a credit card?

Why you may ask indeed, and after I finished the registration process the system noted (in a side column, where I might not have looked) that the “Free” software had Auto-Renewal set to ON, so that I wouldn’t lose my “security experience”. To quote George Costanza, “A HA!!!!!!!“, now I get why they wanted an up to date credit card, so they could auto-renew it some time in the future and charge me $75 for the year (also remember George’s comments about “… sticking it to me!”).

To stop the auto-renewal is a simple matter of finding the auto-renewal page, and turning auto-renewal to OFF, however, I would guess many folks who would not go looking for that (or even notice that auto-renewal was on).

Why does computer security software marketing tricks seem solely based on Used Car Sales and Carnival Games of “Skill” trickery?

Feel Free to Comment

  1. The paid version of McAfee is much better. You may spend a little amount while purchasing it, but in the long run it will save more by safeguarding your PC from virus attacks.

  2. McAfee?!?!?! You’d be better off posting your passwords on-line and dealing with the viruses and phishing and spam yourself than use McAfee!!! It’s the most anti-productive piece of software I’ve ever had the misfortune of using.

    Especially when there are really free alternatives – including the Microsoft’s own Security Essentials.

  3. We switched to McAfee about 8 months ago, and I would strongly recommend you do not try it! It’s full of annoying features many of which I can’t get successfully turned off even after clicking the supposed properties. Things pop up, find bars litter the bottom of the screen, it’s a mess. Just my opinion, of course.

    The credit card number trick is really annoying to me too. Family Tree Maker had a similar feature a few years ago. I hope they’ve since got rid of it.

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