FAQs for CenturyLink Security by McAfee

CenturyLink Security by McAfee is available at no extra cost to all qualifying CenturyLink residential High-Speed Internet customers. It's available to download and install on your compatible PC, Mac, iOS, and Android devices. 

Questions about installation

We recommend you install and activate McAfee Security from the link in My CenturyLink.

Follow the instructions below, and contact us if you have any problems.

  1. Sign in to the My CenturyLink website from the device on which you want to install McAfee. If you don't yet have a My CenturyLink account, learn how to create one.
  2. Click the Download McAfee Security link from the "My Products" menu. This will launch the McAfee site in a new browser tab or window. You’ll see two options on that new page: "Download" or “Send Link.”
  3. Click the Download button and follow the instructions to install the program on your device. This will download the program and the activation code all in one step.


See instructions for alternate ways to install McAfee on your device.

The simplest way to get McAfee on additional devices is to log in to My CenturyLink on that device and follow the instructions above.

Alternately, you can send a link to download and install McAfee on additional devices: 

  1. Open the McAfee app or program
  2. Click on "My Devices"
  3. Select "Protect More"
  4. Enter an email address or mobile number to send the app link to
  5. Follow the link to activate download and installation of CenturyLink Security by McAfee software on the device

You can uninstall the McAfee security program from a device to free up that license for use on another device. The best way to be sure you have correct instructions for removal is to view the support page for your device.

How to remove a program from a Mac

How to remove an app from an iOS device

How to remove a program in Windows 10

How to uninstall an app on Android

CenturyLink Security by McAfee is included with your High-Speed Internet service for installation on at least five of your compatible devices (Windows, MacOS, Android, iOS). If you are a new High-Speed Internet subscriber leasing a Secure WiFi-eligible modem, you can get protection for up to 20 devices*.

*Secure WiFi is currently available in limited markets to customers who leased a compatible modem after August 16, 2020.

CenturyLink Security by McAfee can be downloaded and installed on at least two compatible devices — computers (Windows and MacOS), smartphones and tablets (iOS and Android) — at no extra charge. Each device works a little differently and CenturyLink Security by McAfee provides different protection features based on the device it is protecting.  Please visit the McAfee compatibility page.

There are a couple of reasons why you might see a notice warning you that your McAfee antivirus protection has expired. If you have cancelled your CenturyLink internet service, you can no longer get CenturyLink Security by McAfee. You can still use other McAfee products, at your own choice and cost. If your device has been disconnected from the internet for over 30 days, you will get a warning. The McAfee program keeps itself updated and activated while it's connected to the internet, so if you've been offline for too long, the program will not have been updated.

Any other anti-virus software already installed on your device can conflict with the proper operation of McAfee. When you start installation of the McAfee program, it first checks for any other software that could interfere with its operation. If one is found it will be flagged and McAfee will walk you through uninstalling that software. In case the McAfee prompts for uninstalling other anti-virus programs don't work, we recommend you follow the directions to uninstall a program from your Windows PC or Mac. Once the other software is uninstalled, you need to restart your computer and the McAfee installation should resume automatically.

CenturyLink Security by McAfee is included at no extra cost with your High-Speed Internet service for installation on at least two of your compatible devices (Windows, MacOS, Android, iOS). Customers with Secure WiFi on their leased modems can get protection on up to 20 devices.

Questions about the protection

CenturyLink Security by McAfee is security software for computers, smartphones and tablets, available to install on your compatible devices for protection against most online malware, viruses, phishing, ransomware, and other malicious content. By installing this software to your compatible devices, you can browse, bank and shop more confidently online.

McAfee uses a cloud-based global threat intelligence system (GTI) and machine learning to instantly scan messages, files, and apps, and block or quarantine malicious content like viruses, malware, ransomware, spyware, and more on your compatible devices. 

About Global Threat Intelligence:

  • This cloud-based system continuously communicates with your device, keeping it running smooth and fast.
  • It collects and compares data on all kind of things, like files, websites, emails, and networks, giving you a broad range of protection.
  • McAfee GTI plays nicely with other layers of McAfee protection such as Firewall protection, McAfee WebAdvisor, and Anti-Spam. That keeps everything working together to help keep your devices and data safer.
  • It scans quickly and remembers threats, meaning you get the most complete information — in real-time.

CenturyLink Security by McAfee can be installed on compatible computers (PC and MacOS), smartphones and tablets (iOS and Android). Since each device and operating system works a little differently, CenturyLink Security by McAfee provides different protection features based on the device.

For more details about the features shown below for your device, please visit the McAfee support site. Note that not all features shown for McAfee consumer products are available on the CenturyLink Security program.

McAfee Protection for Desktop PC Mac
Blocks viruses, malware, ransomware, spyware and more. McAfee Real Protect with machine learning on Windows OS and McAfee Active ProtectionTM on Mac OS.

Vulnerability Scanner 
Scans your computer software and other applications to check they are up to date and not vulnerable to known suspicious activity.

Firewall security helps keep hackers and malware from attacking your computer by blocking access to suspicious activity.

Warns you of phishing attacks and websites. Windows version also checks and alerts users to risky websites obtained through social media and instant messages, and blocks online phishing of a user's personal and confidential information.

Blocks dangerous messages before they reach your inbox by removing emails that may contain risky links and viruses. Scans and cleans attached files received from email and IM programs so users can exchange files with confidence.

Safer Web Surfing 
Avoids risky websites and helps prevent dangerous downloads, shows color-coded icons to indicate which web search results may install malicious code, phish for a user's identity or send spam. Performs analysis on each site and annotates them with ratings, warning users of potential security flaws.

McAfee® WebAdvisor
Blocks dangerous web sites, checks for active anti-virus and firewall protection, scans downloads, monitors passwords, and helps users make smarter decisions while using the internet.

McAfee Protection for Mobile Android iOS
Blocks viruses, malware, ransomware, spyware, unwanted programs and more.

Ransomware Removal
Removes detected ransomware by killing the process of the ransom app in the background as soon as any ransomware is detected. This allows users to remove the malicious app.

Safer Web Surfing 
Avoids risky websites and helps prevent dangerous downloads.

WiFi Security
Protects users from network threats and warns users when they connect to an unsafe network. Will automatically disconnect and notify if it has detected an attack. Users can now also manage access points and indicate which connections can always be connected and which ones should always be disconnected.


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