Security software company McAfee is offering compensation to
computer users affected by the recent glitch in one of its software updates
which caused widespread problems for Windows XP users.
The update delivered a false report of a virus infection,
causing computers using McAfee and running XP Service Pack 3 to crash.
Computers worldwide were affected, including some in this country. Computers
operated by businesses and government agencies, as well as personal users, were
“First off, I want to apologise on behalf of McAfee and say
that we’re extremely sorry for any impact the faulty signature update file may
have caused you and your organisations,” said Barry McPherson, McAfee's
executive vice president of support and customer service, in a blog posting.
McPherson said a fault in the testing process led to the
faulty update making its way out of the testing environment and into customer
systems. McAfee quickly issued a fix for the problem and its staff worked with
customers to resolve outstanding issues.
McAfee has now promised to reimburse customers for losses
suffered as a result of the problem.
“For impacted home or home office customers who have
incurred costs to repair PCs as a result of the security update issue, McAfee
will reimburse reasonable expenses, such as a visit to a local tech support
specialist,” a company blog posting said. “Details of this program, including
steps to submit a reimbursement request, will be posted on the McAfee website
within a few days, so please check back. Additionally, because we value our
loyal customers, home or home office users whose PCs were rendered inoperable
or severely impaired as a result of the security update will receive a free
two-year extension of their current McAfee subscription product at no charge.
This extension will appear in the ‘My Account’ section of the McAfee website
within the next 30 days.”
McAfee believes only “a small percentage” of its customers’
PCs were rendered inoperable or severely impaired.
Affected users in this country who are still having problems
can get help from McAfee by calling 0800 880 094.