The Phish Alert Who Cried Wolf – McAfee Anti-Virus Calls Legitimate Sites Phishy, Also Freezes Computers and Locks Programs

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The latest round in McAfee Antivirus heartache has people complaining that perfectly legitimate and innocent websites are being called “phishing sites” by McAfee.

“McAfee has detected a potential phishing Web site. Phishing sites appear to be legitimate, but they request you to provide sensitive information, which can be used to commit fraud. McAfee recommends that you block this Web site,” says the alert.


This of course means that not only will the people getting the erroneous McAfee alert not go to the website, but the website will get a bad name. Perhaps even worse, once people realize how bogus many of the alerts are, they will start to ignore the phishing web sites alert altogether. It’s the phishing alert that cried wolf.

Separately, but relatedly, the latest upgrade of McAfee VirusScan Enterprise is causing headaches for people who run Lotus Notes.

Explained one IT administrator who wished to remain anonymous to CyberTechHelp, “The upgrade locks people out and is causing Notes errors where we can not even restart Notes, but need to reinstall,”, adding that the demand for help with McAfee and Lotus Notes was “higher than normal.”

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This is by no means the first time that McAfee has caused such problems or misidentified good elements for bad. Earlier last year, an update of McAfee misidentified dozens and dozens of executable (.exe) files as malicious, leading to the quarantine and deletion of many necessary and sometimes even critical files. For example, McAfee misidentified such innocuous files as excel.exe and adobeupdatemanager.exe as malicious files. Lesser known but equally useful files such as usersid.exe and imjpinst.exe – both standard Windows XP files – were also flagged as bad guys needing quarantine.

What’s the lesson here?

Well, obviously the issue here is the need for such measures on your computer, and how they may conflict with other programs. Having too many antivirus programs on one computer can cause a problem as well.

 

More and more people are changing from Windows machines to Macs – I myself now have a MacBook, and it rocks! It not only makes switching from a Windows computer to Mac painless – it makes it fun! And because the new MacBooks can run Windows, you don’t even have to live without your “must have” Windows programs!

(And check this out! If you are thinking of switching, I just found out that Amazon, which already has one of the lowest prices on Macs, is offering a $75.00 rebate on the MacBook! Couple that with no tax and free shipping, and you save a cool bundle on a brand new MacBook!)

Check out the deal on the MacBook at Amazon

If you aren’t prepared to upgrade to a different computer, many people whom I know and respect in the PC world swear by Computer Associate’s eTrust Antivirus program, which sure beats swearing at McAfee!

No Paywall Here!
The Internet Patrol is and always has been free. We don't hide our articles behind a paywall, or restrict the number of articles you can read in a month if you don't give us money. That said, it does cost us money to run the site, so if something you read here was helpful or useful, won't you consider donating something to help keep the Internet Patrol free?
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5 thoughts on “The Phish Alert Who Cried Wolf – McAfee Anti-Virus Calls Legitimate Sites Phishy, Also Freezes Computers and Locks Programs

  1. McAfee antivirus is misidentifying a component of my software as containing a Trojan. I plan to sell this software worldwide and need to get McAfee to stop quarantining this component. McAfee don’t reply to my emails. Does anyone have a clue how I can get through to them or what to do next?

  2. All McAfee products are overblown, resource hogging steaming heaps of poorly designed junkware. Once installed, McAfee possesses your system and is harder to remove than AOL or Norton. You have to run a special program just to remove all the registry entries. CilyPudi says Beware!!

  3. I run clamwin every other day or so, when the computer would ordinarily be idle and forget it.

  4. Since you like eTrust, I’ll point out that ZoneAlarm Antivirus includes the ZoneAlarm firewall and eTrust Antivirus bundle for $19.99/year. I have that or the Internet Suite loaded on all my family’s machines.

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