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McAfee Secure purchased by Intel

Annual cost Quadrupled !

     
7:56 pm on Mar 3, 2011 (gmt 0)

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Just got a call from McAfee Secure and was told that they were just recently purchased by Intel and that we were to be put on a new pricing schedule.

We'd been paying around $1700.00 annually for the service which is expensive, but not too hard to swallow. Well after prying out of the sales rep what this new "pricing schedule" ment I was told that our cost annually would go up to $11,000.00 per year. I about fell out of my chair!

The sales guy was trying to tell me basically that we had been "getting away" with lower pricing for the last two years.
I was truly offended and at that new rediculous annual cost in this economy we will not be renewing the service.
8:03 pm on Mar 3, 2011 (gmt 0)

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Based on their case studies, they make their money off of the illusion that if people see their logo, they feel more secure with transactions. Do I have that right?

If so, yea, I can't blame you for dropping them for an increase like that.
8:06 pm on Mar 3, 2011 (gmt 0)

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It's absurd. They are basing it off of page views and they are counting ones from search engine bots.... really really .. I mean really?!

I do think their service is helpful, but not that helpful .. I mean we arent amazon or some huge ecommerce site for sure.
8:14 pm on Mar 3, 2011 (gmt 0)

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wow. So are you currently shopping for another payment provider? Is there anything that seems to be equivalent to what you had with McAffee?

I am curious as to what payment providers people are choosing these days.
8:54 pm on Mar 3, 2011 (gmt 0)

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It's not a payment provider at all, McAfee Secure used to be called Hacker Safe, it puts a seal on your site and they scan daily for any vulnerabilities.
9:03 pm on Mar 3, 2011 (gmt 0)

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Oh ! I can clearly see the use of the word 'absurd' then. That is an interesting service that they provide. Are there any alternatives?
9:07 pm on Mar 3, 2011 (gmt 0)

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How much you want to bet they decide your old price will suffice, when you go to cancel.
11:38 pm on Mar 3, 2011 (gmt 0)

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Well if this is true, they lost me. We pay $2400/year for two sites.
3:27 am on Mar 4, 2011 (gmt 0)

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2400 I can even swallow 3k. But 11k is not worth the supposed 12% increase in sales they tout. We didn't see it and we've used them for 3 years.

I did get an email back from the guy and he sent me page view numbers that were bogus. I know what my yearly average page views are. They double, almost tripled our pages views in their count.... I smell scam.
3:33 am on Mar 4, 2011 (gmt 0)

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Did they call you out of the blue or was your renewal up?
3:34 am on Mar 4, 2011 (gmt 0)

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Why would the price be so high? Do they provide X number of hours of IT services? Do they provide insurance in the event you are hacked? If so, how much for $11K? If they scan the site, are they providing you with detailed help in closing a vunerablity?
4:04 am on Mar 4, 2011 (gmt 0)

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Nope, all they provide are daily scans of your website and notify you of vulnerabilities, and you get a little banner on your website that notifies customers that your website is safe.

Now if they provided insurance against credit card fraud then 11k would be worth it... maybe.

Yes, they contacted me out of the blue. Our yearly subscription is up in a few weeks.
8:53 am on Mar 4, 2011 (gmt 0)

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I recently looked at at another service for the scanning part, it seemed to be reputable, and a fraction of the cost.

The little banner part, can't see where people really care about that, or care for one companies banner over anothers.

BTW, ever looked at their wikipedia page? Seems like a (negative) ad. Who knows what biases whoever wrote it has, but doesn't inspire confidence...

has come under criticism for high pressure sales tactics, high and variable cost, and unsolicited phone calls.
3:19 pm on Mar 4, 2011 (gmt 0)

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I've never understood paying for those "security seals". Has anyone noticed that they really increase sales? I could make one up with Photoshop and 95% of customers would never know the difference.
3:55 pm on Mar 4, 2011 (gmt 0)

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... they scan daily for any vulnerabilities.


As a developer, the whole idea of being able to simply "scan daily" for vulnerabilities is a fantasy.

If it were true, Microsoft would hire McAfee to "scan" Windows, and fix everything for good.

Vulnerabilities may exist on private URLs that neither McAfee nor the site owner are aware of. eCommerce sites use callback URLs for Google Checkout, PayPal IPN, and many credit card gateways (Protx, some Cardinal stuff), that can be spoofed by knowing the URL and having knowledge of the source code. (Many carts offer source-code as an option).

I'm only pointing out that spending $11k/yr for a "daily scan" is rediculous. They could make it an hourly-scan, or even every 10 minutes, and it wouldn't change the attack vectors.

Well-known URLs, or open ports, are not the problem. It's the "not-well-known URLs" that someone could use to place fraudulent orders, mark payments as "cleared", or upload spoofed SKUs at low-prices. McAfee cannot detect this, even for $11k/yr.
4:08 pm on Mar 4, 2011 (gmt 0)

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I rarely see that McAfee Secure stuff anymore. I just did a quick check on their site and much of the information they are relying on for sales is dated. In fact, two of the Case Studies I checked no longer display the McAfee Seal, what gives?

$1,700 to $11,000 per year?! Wait until the NYT gets wind of this! ;)

Oh, that 12% increase is based on July 2008 to January 2009 data. Much has changed online since then. Consumer confidence is at a completely different level.

Also, much of the promotional materials, Case Studies, etc, are dated.

I can do plenty of things with CSS and other methods to give a secure area the feel that is needed for consumer confidence. I like to serve an alternate stylesheet for secure pages too. Change some things to green, serve a different favicon, all sorts of neat little stuff that makes an immediate first impression when visiting the page. You don't need no stinkin' security seal - make your own! :)
6:08 pm on Mar 4, 2011 (gmt 0)

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Drop them the cost if far from the supposed increase in sales that is supposed to be generated from the seal. I tried them out when all this first came out years ago and it just didn't pan out. They have called me back many times since offered me 3 months free etc and etc. just another spam call to me.
7:56 pm on Mar 4, 2011 (gmt 0)

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For me I did see an increase in conversions doing A/B testing. I honestly dont remember how large of an increase. McAfee has found some issues in my site over the years and allowed me the opportunity to fix them. I use to be on a very low end cart which had issues.

Im thinking now though that I will create my own "safe" badge and get rid of Mcafee when it comes time to renew.
6:19 pm on Mar 9, 2011 (gmt 0)

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I've never understood paying for those "security seals". Has anyone noticed that they really increase sales? I could make one up with Photoshop and 95% of customers would never know the difference.


My experience has been that yes, they actually DO increase sales - however my experience has been that the paid ones like McAfee and TrustE don't have any measurable difference than the free ones like UpFront and HonestyInCommerce.

Don't just make a fake seal and think it's going to have any effect, it won't. It's not the physical presence of a seal that helps, it's the whole "third party validation" that makes it count. The fact that some third party says "this site is OK" is what gets the conversion rate up. When all other factors are equal, consumers will buy from the site with the trust badge before they'll buy from the one without it.
6:17 am on Mar 10, 2011 (gmt 0)

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Drop them the cost if far from the supposed increase in sales that is supposed to be generated from the seal.
Agree.
3:52 pm on Mar 10, 2011 (gmt 0)

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@Bewenched - they did the same thing to us. We were up for renewal (not THAT much of an increase, but close to double). We told him that, if that was the case, we would be cancelling our service...SURPRISE! Old pricing was offered as a "valued customer".
 

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