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McAfee reserves $50M for SEC settlement

Penalty is part of a proposed deal to end a three-year investigation into McAfee's books.

Security software maker McAfee has put aside $50 million for a potential settlement with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, the Santa Clara, Calif., company said on Thursday. The SEC in March 2002 started an investigation into McAfee's books for the year 2000 and prior periods. That case may now be settled, McAfee said in a statement.

The proposed agreement would include a $50 million penalty, the company said. The SEC still has to approve the deal, though McAfee has been advised that SEC staff will recommend its acceptance. In May 2002 McAfee, which then did business as Network Associates, restated portions of its financial results from 1998 through 2000 because of accounting errors. Shares in McAfee closed the day Thursday at $30.50, down $0.24, on the New York Stock Exchange.