McAfee to Reimburse Consumers for Downtime

A few days ago, I wrote about the McAfee update disaster and what it could cost to clean up. Today, the company has announced that they are willing to reimburse home consumers for any out-of-pocket expenses they may have incurred while trying to recover from this mess. Those home users will also see a free two-year extension of their existing McAfee software IF they choose to stay with the company.

However, nothing is being said about the enterprise customers, and they are not happy. Many companies are still trying to get everything back to normal. “We are now going on day three of fixing YOUR issue,” wrote someone identified only as Amanda in a comment Friday. “Four people working much overtime, sending out disks to our satellite employees, and just plain dealing with junk that we shouldn’t have to. I am personally three days behind on my work, and every time I get an angry phone call, I want to patch it through to your office.”

I’m still not convinced that the number of people impacted is as small as McAfee wants us to think. If you read through the blog comments alone, there are hundreds of thousands of machines that have been affected on the enterprise level. It’s doubtful that Amanda is the only person still trying to deal with this unfortunate incident. Extending a subscription is not going to cut it for these businesses. Many are reporting lost income in addition to the money spent trying to fix the problems caused by the faulty update.

One user who called themselves only “Millie” on the blog stated that “The vast majority of affected users were back up and running smoothly within hours” – you’re kidding, right?? Or maybe your definition of ‘vast majority’ and ‘within hours’ differs from mine.” This comment sums up what much of the response has been so far.

McAfee is not handling this situation well at all. They are downplaying the entire issue, and not bothering to offer much insight for their enterprise customers. It’s difficult at best to find information as to what happened, and further comments are not forthcoming. Problems can happen to anyone, and have done so with nearly every other A/V company at some point.

The problem here isn’t that an “oopsie” happened. The problem is the fact that McAfee isn’t handling things very well from a customer service standpoint after the fact.