CES2014 Intel has announced plans to phase out the infamous McAfee anti-virus brand over the next year in favour of a new Intel Security brand.
The re-branding will begin immediately, but the transition will take up to a year before it is complete with the introduction of new versions of security software products from the technology giant. The shield – which represents the core values of security and protection - will remain and McAfee will continue to operate as a wholly owned subsidiary of Intel, albeit under the Intel Security umbrella.
Brian Krzanich, chief exec of Intel, announced the branding change during a presentation at CES 2014, the consumer technology conference taking place in Las Vegas this week.
Krzanich also debuted Intel Edison, a new computer housed in an SD card form factor with built-in wireless capabilities and support for multiple operating systems as well as wearable technology and support for combined Windows/Android systems. Yet the confirmation of a rumoured decision to ditch the McAfee brand has provoked the strongest reactions in the tech world.
John McAfee, the maverick tech businessman who founded McAfee Associates back in 1987, but has had nothing to do with the firm since leaving in 1994, long before Intel's $7.6bn acquisition in August 2010, reacted with unbounded enthusiasm to news of the name change.
Intel first floated plans to drop the McAfee brand last month, a development John reacted to with glee.
"Thank God.I will no longer have 2 apologise for the @McAfee software," he said in a Twitter update at the time.
McAfee (the man) then told the BBC yesterday that he was elated about Intel dropping his name from its security products. "I am now everlastingly grateful to Intel for freeing me from this terrible association with the worst software on the planet," McAfee (the man) said. "These are not my words, but the words of millions of irate users."
"My elation at Intel's decision is beyond words," he added.
McAfee (the man) has been trenchant and consistent in his criticism of software that bore his name. Last year the self-described “eccentric millionaire” released a video of himself featuring strippers, snorting “bath salts” (hey, that's what the labels on the white containers in the video say – Vulture Central's backroom gremlins) and playing up to the worst excesses of his reputation by "uninstalling" the firm's anti-virus software with a handgun. ®