The Free Motion Quilting Project: McAfee Red Flag

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

McAfee Red Flag

It's come to my attention that the virus protection software McAfee is currently listing this site as "malicious" and "high risk."

As you all know, this site is neither of those two things. I do not link to random sites full of viruses or spam. I do not require you to submit your name or email address in any phishing scams.

My privacy policy, license, and disclaimer is always clearly listed on the side bar of each and every page. I clearly list the intent for this site to share quilting information and sometimes my personal ramblings on life. Even on those posts, I give fair warning if a post contains explicit language or information.

Yes, I do offer a newsletter sign up in the upper right hand of this blog, but in EVERY SINGLE EMAIL I send, there is a link at the bottom for you to unsubscribe to the newsletter.

I go out of my way to provide you with a safe, secure area where you can read about quilting, enjoy the videos I've created, and have fun with the new designs.

But on February 12th, someone decided to post the two following warnings to McAfee:
WARNING THIS SITE WAS CAUGHT IN A SPAM TRAP: Criminals often abuse free hosting services. Beware of malicious scripts which are frequently found on free hosted sites. Best stay away from sites such as this if you want to avoid being victimized.

This Google's Blogger account is abused by scammers. The payload is just a link or a redirection to an illegal or otherwise shady site. All this just to fly under the radar and fool spam filters. Disgusting, isn't it. Don't fall for this scam. There's nothing you would gain, you can only lose.
I'd really love to know the "malicious scrips" they are talking about. As for links, almost every link from this blog is going to my website I'm not a criminal and I don't scam anyone.

Is this just trolls trying to make my life difficult? I don't know.

I find it really alarming that only 2 comments could cause this red flagging. This is both libel and really scary because there is a lot of nasty people online that like to shut perfectly good sites down. I would really hate to think that I've pissed someone off by giving away free quilting information so much that they would target me.

I actually didn't even know the red flag was listed until this weekend because I don't use McAfee software - I use AVG. When I called McAfee about the problem, their customer service person couldn't seem to understand why I didn't use their software and kept trying to sell it to me. If anything is a scam - they are!

So that's my explanation for that red flag many people have been emailing or commenting about. I've contacted McAfee again via email about the issue and I do hope it is resolved soon.

In the future, if there is something on my site that doesn't look right or is linking to the wrong place, please feel free to contact me about it.

Thanks for your understanding,

Leah Day


  1. I haven't seen any red flag come up when I am at your site. I hope this is taken care of immediately! I remember reading on another blog that old or broken links can sometimes cause the red flag. I'm sure I need to go through my old posts to find those, a truly tedious exercise...

  2. An FYI for McAfee users: the company engages in shady business practices. I learned this when I canceled my subscription yet was charged for another year. This was before they elected to hide the "turn off auto-renewal feature" on their website. I had to call their wonderful outsourced people at customer support and learned for the customer's "convenience" the charge is automatic and one must opt out by voice, not email, otherwise you will be continually charged.

    More info on this:

    This is a shame because McAfee used to be a solid anti-virus program back in the day, along with Norton. Now I go to great lengths to keep all and any of their software off my hard drive.

    AVG free is perfectly adequate for most web users and is easy to use is minimally intrusive. I've also used kaspersky lab, which is excellent. However my favorite, most secure antivirus program is threatfire. This is ideal if you want to run your computer on 24 hour lockdown.

  3. Well, isn't that nice: they'll red flag a site with no thought or investigation whatsoever, but are bloody clueless when you want to speak to someone about it.
    My hubby is a computer security specialist and says they're more like a virus than a helpful program, like the crappy DRM that audible makes you download, which infects your core source code. Turds, aren't they?
    P.s. I love your site and store, but living in the UK means both high shipping and customs charges :( but I always check in on what you're up to. Best wishes!

  4. I am so sorry your sites have come under such unfair attack.

  5. I haven't seen the red flag when I visit your blog.......although this is really terrible that they would target you.....I come here everyday and learn a new design.....thank you for your free videos and such.....I love your website and will continue to order from email account was hacked and my addy's hijacked.....they sent out emails telling everyone I was in Spain and needed money! People that do these things are terrible people and so dishonest.....they then cause honest people like us to have to deal with their mess.....I hope this clears up for you soon.....

  6. I fortunately don't use McAfee. I found them inadequate and a pain back when it came with the "free trial" on every computer. It was a trial to get rid of it and slowed my computer down back in the day. So I have no problems. I'm sorry for those that do. I hope the person who did such a malicious thing gets it back 10 fold. It's a shame y'all, an honest hard working family, should be harassed and defamed like this. I suspect it's not easy to get off that list without making a lot of noise. Please keep us updated. Thanks for the tip Josh! I'll check those out programs.

  7. Seriously terrible and I'm sorry to hear about it. First thing that came to mind was contact your local Attonery General to file a complaint.

    Calling your site spam is libel. The fact they aren't listening to you when you contact them and are trying to sell their product is shady. Filing a complaint online is pretty easy. You can also contact McAfee and inform them you have made a complaint on their company due to their inability to show progress or care to on your site's issue.

  8. I'm sorry you've been given a moment's trouble about this. Your blog is lovely and helpful and fun, I can't imagine why anyone would complain to McAfee. I use Sophos and have never had a problem with a blog.

    Thanks for all you do for us Leah, hang in there.

  9. I haven't seen any red flags and on my computer--my AVG gives you a green check mark that you're safe :) Our local university recommends AVG and Super Anti Spyware.

    There's nasty people out there and they do stupid things. We all just need to move on to quilting :) Your blog is wonderful and I think of you every time I put on my quilting gloves! Your family is such an inspiration!

  10. Sounds like McAfee is doing it all to get your money. I would ignore it and move on. As Josh said they are runnign a shady business, and they don't like the fact that most computer users now use AVG which is free. It is biting into their pockets and they don't like it. So they find a popular site and just start targeting it. I wouldn't contact them anymore either, because that will provoke them even more to try to do more damage. Keep your head held high, you are doing a wonderful job!

  11. I have a pop-up block thing that I just click off when I open your Blog. It happens. I know there is no risk here!

  12. I haven't had any problems with your site. Nothing comes up as evil.

    I've heard terrible things about McAfee and refuse to use them. My phone company tries to sell it to me everytime they call.

    My response is always, "If you need to sell me antivirus software are you insinuating that your phone lines are insecure and open to viruses? If so, maybe I need to find another provider." That usually confuses the person doing the talking.

    Best of luck

  13. I was sure that it is something wrong... I read your blog for a long time and I appreciate your work and your honest and open way to spread your knowledge. That's why I wanted to draw your attention about that.
    I'm glad that you decide to write a post with this subject. It's very good for the new readers.
    My best thoughts for you!
    I'm staying here!

  14. It sounds like they are accepting spam and using it to flag websites. What you posted show absolutely no proof that they even glanced at your blog. What a time-wasting frustration!

  15. I also visit your blog daily and love the videos you do and share with everyone. I have never seen any red flags when I'm on your site. I'm thinking McAfees statement listing your site as 'high risk' should have read....'high risk of being very intellegent and informational, along with being highly inspirational'. I hope these troubles dissapear and you continue to create and inspire. Thank you for all you do!!

  16. I love reading your blog Leah. Have gained much confidence and many ideas because of your quilting ideas and examples. I've never liked McAfee. I used AVG for years and loved it and then someone suggested another anti-virus that was supposed to be even better. It's called Avast I gave it a try and have been loving it ever since. There are plenty of good free Anti-virus programs to choose from. I totally agree with Josh that McAfee is very shady in its business practices. Hope you get the problem solved quickly and without too much hassle.

    vail in tn

  17. I am soooo glad I am a Mac user and do not have issues like these.

    No red flags when I visit either!
    I love your blog and have learned so much about free motion quilting from you!

  18. I have used McAfee for years but will not renew on expiration of the contract. They "flag" a lot of perfectly safe sites. When you look at the comments made by the "reporters" on the McAfee site, it shows they post over 100!!!!! citations of unsafe sites a __day___! What does that tell you??? And that McAfee doesn't check on this is inexcusable. Shame on them!

  19. I so appreciate the work and love you put into your website. I am so sorry that you've been dealing with this -- what a shame (as in, someone or someones sure should be ashamed). In any case, I just wanted to say thank you for your inspirational work!

  20. I don't use McAfee, but I have a lot of problems with their software as it came preloaded on my pc. What a pain to get rid of it!

    I use Kaspersky, your site doesn't get flagged, but as I have parental control activated, if I go to, lots of the quilt store sites listed come up as pornography, and sometimes drug references! I just override it so I can drool at stash. But that's modern technology for you.

    What a pain for you! Hope McAf gets their act together- what evidence did they have that your site was a problem??

  21. I got the reg flag just now, when I came to the site. Ridiculous!
    I clicked on my site adviser and it took me to a page where I could check out those two so-called "reviewers". What a couple of clowns!!! Pages and pages of site "warnings" just like what they said about your site. The one joker has posted the same crap over a million times...The "reviewers" ARE the spam!!

    I was looking for a place at McAfee to leave some positive feedback on your behalf, but that apparently is not allowed. Dumb.

    I love your site and all the wonderful designs and videos that you share!

  22. Just wanted to let you know that my pc has McAfee antivirus software, and I don't get a warning when I visit your blog - which I do each time you post. I hope this gets resolved soon.

  23. I haven't gotten any red flags for your site, and we use McAfee.

  24. I have McAfee on my computer too and I have never received a red flag from this site..

  25. wow the red flag came up after I posted a comment.. This is awful.

  26. Keep your chin up Leah! Your work is amazing and your generosity in sharing your tallent is wonderful. Once again the good and the bad of the www do battle. :)

  27. I'm so sorry you have had to deal with this. Your site is a real inspiration and I check it daily. I've always found Norton Anti-Virus to be far better than McAfee--now I feel even more confirmed in that belief.

  28. I used to use "that" virus softwear but discontinued doing so because everytime I took my laptop with me to a new location it would freeze up my computer and when I would call the CS I always got the runaround. I am disgusted and disappointed with not only their program but also the CS that they provide.
    All of us who follow your blog know that there is nothing to these flags and I think that if there are any of your followers out there who use "this" program, they should send a lovely little e-mail out to "them" and let them know that it is HOGWASH!!!!

  29. That is so unfortunate, especially for a great site like yours. People can be so vindictive. Good luck to you!

  30. I use a program called Avast (which is free and I find works better than Mcaffee and isnt a memory hog), and I havent had any red flags either.

    I love companies that believe that single household uses should be free. you only have to renew your licence once a year (and you always get a new reg key for free).

  31. McAfee itself is a virus - noone should use it. . ESPECIALLY the free version. It can totally destroy your computer.
    Keep your computer's Windows/Mac Softwear updated and always be aware of where you're clicking.
    That's the thing that brings so many newbies down, is clicking things that they shouldn't. If you don't know what it is. . don't click it!
    If you're doing a google search for something quilty - make sure before clicking the link that you look at the actual URL. If it is not from a site that you know and trust, don't click it. It is most likely a virus. It is terrible that hackers are now targeting us quilters, but they do!

    Furthermore I'm very sorry that this has upset you Leah - Blogger and Google are very trustworthy sities to me, I've never heard of either of them eating anyone or thing.

  32. I'm a web developer and I just had a quick look through your page source and couldn't see anything worrisome. I did this because one of my friends installed a google sidebar addon and that had malicious scripts attached to it. Be careful you test and check any sidebar addons you install through blogger.

    If your site contains malicious scripts google will let you know in their google search. You search for your full blogger site URL, and check the description - its fine. No malicious script.

    I also don't use mcafee, and highly recommend kaspersky if you're up for something different.


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