McAfee mum on enterprise compo

McAfee Australia has declined to say whether it will compensate enterprise customers affected by a bug in its software, although it has promised compensation for consumers who had to pay to get their computers repaired.

McAfee Australia has declined to say whether it will compensate enterprise customers affected by a bug in its software, although it has promised compensation for consumers who had to pay to get their computers repaired.

The bug had caused Windows XP computers with Service Pack 3 installed to have networking problems or repeatedly reboot. The problem affected some major enterprises including Coles and the Commonwealth Bank.

Over the long weekend, McAfee said impacted "home" or "home office" customers who had incurred costs to repair their computer as a result of the security update issue would be reimbursed. The company said "reasonable expenses" would be able to be claimed and that details of such a claim program would be posted on the McAfee website "within a few days".

McAfee Australia and New Zealand regional director Gavin Struthers told ZDNet Australia today that there had been "a bunch" done in the enterprise sector in terms of fixing affected customers in Australia, but was unable to say exactly what had been done.

"I think where we are at is we are expecting more information ... but we need that direction from the US. And on that basis, I am unable to say anything more than that," McAfee's Struthers said. "There may be further updates today."

At the time of writing, a ZDNet Australia web poll showed that 93 per cent of readers thought that customers should be compensated.

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McAfee has apologised to its enterprise customers on its website and said it had "teams of people standing by to help" on the phone.

David DeWalt, McAfee chief executive officer, said on McAfee's security insight blog that the company "deeply" regretted the impact the bug may have had on customers.

"In some cases, the outages were lengthy," DeWalt said. "Even among the vast majority of customers who did not experience operating disruptions, the mere possibility created an unwelcome distraction and reason for concern."

McAfee had originally said that "less than one half of 1 per cent" of its enterprise customers were affected by the bug, but has since changed that to a small percentage.

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