John McAfee Review: The Outrageous Internet Entrepreneur and Prankster
John McAfee, the founder of McAfee Antivirus Software, is in hot water again. On Monday, he was arrested in Spain and faces up to 5 years in federal prison for tax evasion.
After his arrest, prosecutors in Tennessee charged McAfee with additional charges of tax evasion for the last five years. Prosecutors say if convicted on all charges, McAfee could spend up to 30 years in prison
John McAfee, An Overview
The man behind the first commercial antivirus software McAfee, John David McAfee, was born on September 18, 1945, from an English mother and an American father. British-American computer programmer with a keen interest in cybersecurity and prolific businessman, McAfee founded his first software company, McAfee Associates, in 1987. The company continues to produce security software solutions long after McAfee resigned. The business also retained his iconic brand name after the departure of its founder, and even through multiple owners by Intel in 2011 and TPG Capital since 2017.
After his departure from McAfee Associates in 1994, John McAfee founded several cybersecurity and computing businesses, including Tribal Voice, which went on creating one of the first instant messaging programs, PowWow, and Future Tense Central. During that time, John McAfee’s wealth peaked at $100million, but the financial crisis of 2007-2008 affected his fortune. McAfee’s wealth is now estimated to be $4 million. He has been invited to the leadership roles of many computing technology companies, including MGT Capital Investment and Everykey. John McAfee was the CEO of Luxcore from 2018 to 2019 before leaving the U.S. He has lived several years in Belize, where he founded an all-natural antibiotics company, QuorumEx, before heading back to the U.S. in 2013.
Passionate by smartphone apps, cybersecurity, cryptocurrency technology, and health yoga and all-natural antibiotics, John McAfee often turns his personal interests into business opportunities. Since 2016, he has been an active political activist with the Libertarian Party, as he campaigned for its nomination for the President of the United States 2016 election but lost to rival and former New Mexico governor, Gary Johnson.
John McAfee Calls Coronavirus a Sino-US Conspiracy. On a March 12, 2020 podcast, McAfee stated:
“Look at the death rate outside of the cities. It is 0.16%. What’s the death rate from flu type A and B? 0.17%, so it (Coronavirus) is slightly less deadly than the flu. Please God, this is a false flag if there’s ever been one! What might happen, is a crackdown in China of monumental totalitarian proportions, 1984 type shit, where everybody is rounded up. No one’s allowed to talk, no one’s allowed in, no one’s allowed out. Or it maybe this is a joint venture (between China and the US).“
Personal Life and Interest in Antivirus Software
John McAfee was born in England, where his U.S. Army base father was stationed. As a result, he has often stated that he feels both British and American, even though he has spent the major part of his life in the U.S., Salem, Virginia, where he was raised.
In 1967, John McAfee received his Bachelor’s degree in mathematics from Roanoke College. He joined NASA’s Institute for Space Studies in New York City as a programmer the following year. But it’s only in the 1980s that his interest in antivirus software solutions arose as he received a copy of the first computer virus for MS-DOS, Brain. In 1987, McAfee founded McAfee Associates and commercialized the first antivirus software solution, McAfee. However, he resigned from the company in 1994 after it was incorporated in Delaware and sold his remaining stake. McAfee Associates retained the name of its founder throughout mergers and joint ventures.
It was announced in 2014 that McAfee-related products were to be marketed as Intel Security. John McAfee welcomed the news, thanking Intel “for freeing me from this terrible association with the worst software on the planet” in an interview with BBC News. The business, however, has remained under the name McAfee.
His position as the person responsible for developing the first commercial antivirus program has made him, in his words, “the most popular hacking target”, according to an interview in the Mensa Bulletin, January 2012. As a result, McAfee uses extensive cybersecurity strategies, including changing his I.P. address several times a day and entrusting the purchase of his computer equipment to others. He has also stated that he doesn’t use the McAfee antivirus software.
After McAfee Associates: Belize and Cybersecurity
After his departure from McAfee Associates, John McAfee founded a series of business ventures focusing on computing technology, including Tribal Voice. He maintained a strong interest in cybersecurity throughout his career. After the launch of PowWow by Tribal Voice, he joined the board of firewall software business, Zone Labs.
He interrupted his business pursuit of cybersecurity when he moved to Belize, where he started an all-natural antibiotics company using anti-quorum technology. He was forced to flee Belize in 2012 when he feared for his life in the hands of the Belizean authorities. He sought political asylum in Guatemala and was momentarily held in a Guatemalan detention center. He re-entered the U.S. soil in December 2012. A film, titled King of the Jungle, has been in discussion since 2017 to illustrate John McAfee’s life in Belize.
In 2013, McAfee started Future Tense Central with the goal of producing a secure computer network device, D-Central. He then used the company to develop his interest in smartphone applications. In 2016, after he joined the security startup, Everykey, John McAfee used his app knowledge to create a publicity stunt during which he claimed he could decrypt the iPhone used by the San Bernardino shooters.
After he was appointed CEO of MGT Capital Investment, in May 2006, he changed the focus of the company to cybersecurity, using another publicity stunt during which he claimed he could exploit a flaw in the Android operating system to read encrypted Whatsapp messages. He also spent his time as the head of MGT to develop the expertise of the business regarding blockchain systems for cybersecurity. However, he left the company in 2018 on amicable terms.
From 2018 to 2019, he has been the CEO of Lyxcore, a cryptocurrency company that dedicates its solutions to support other businesses. In January 2019, John McAfee announced he was living internationally on a boat to avoid the U.S. authorities following suspected IRS charges.
The Political Interests of John McAfee
On the political front, John McAfee identifies as a libertarian and campaigned for the presidential nomination of the Libertarian Party in 2016. He lost to rival Gary Johnson but has announced plans to run for president in the 2020 presidential election in a campaign formally launched in June 2018. His primary campaign focuses on promoting the use of cryptocurrencies and increasing cyber awareness. John McAfee has stated that he will seek the nomination of the Libertarian party, but he doesn’t exclude forming his own party. He has relocated his political headquarters to Cuba, where his defense of Che Guevara put him at odds with the Libertarian Party.
He is married to Janice Dyson, a former prostitute he met in December 2012 when he re-entered the U.S. territory. Over 30 years his junior, Janice McAfee supports his presidential campaign and is the director of media relations in John McAfee’s 2020 United States presidential election.