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McAfee in BitDefender virus slur spat

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Internet Security Threat Report 2014

McAfee has distanced itself from slurs against rival AV firm BitDefender contained in sponsored ad links on Google.com. The Romanian firm was unsurprisingly upset at having its products referred to as a "virus" in ads that linked to a page offering McAfee anti-virus software (screenshot here).

To make matters worse the sponsored link (with pejorative text "Remove BitDefender virus. Clean your PC if already infected") appeared when a search for "BitDefender" was performed on Google.com. Bogdan Irina, BitDefender Sales and Marketing Director, condemned the ad as "false advertising and libel".

McAfee said the ad link did not reflect company policy and promised an investigation.

In a statement, Sarah Whipp, senior director, EMEA marketing at McAfee, said: "McAfee has been made aware of sponsored ad links on Google.com referring to antivirus company BitDefender as a virus. These links do not comply with the policies and principles of our advertising. We do not condone this practice and have therefore launched an investigation into the source of these sponsored links." ®

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Internet Security Threat Report 2014

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