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MacKeeper to pay out $2M in proposed class action settlement

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The original developers of much maligned Mac security software MacKeeper have agreed to a $2 million settlement in a class action lawsuit over deceptive claims and false advertisement, with part of the sum set aside for customer refunds.

Under the proposed settlement, ZeoBIT, creators of MacKeeper that later sold the software to German firm Kromtech, will put up to $2 million in a fund to cover attorney fees, refunds and administrative costs, reports MacWorld. One-third is earmarked for lawyers, with a large chunk of the remainder to be meted out equally among claimants who purchased MacKeeper prior to July 8.

In all there some 513,000 U.S. customers in the settlement class, some of whom paid up to $39.95 per copy to license MacKeeper. Depending on the number of claims, customers could recoup original costs, but full refunds are not guaranteed. The company admits no fault as part of the settlement's terms.

MacKeeper is notorious for aggressively advertising its software and services through online ad agencies, though its new parent firm Kromtech is supposedly abandoning such tactics and has made efforts to cut down on "scare ads" pushed by affiliates. The software's validity is also a subject of debate as tests have shown it to sometimes return false positives in system scans.

Those eligible for compensation must visit the settlement website and submit a claim by Nov. 30 to receive payment.