John McAfee escaped from Belize where police still want to talk to him about a homicide. He was and apparently still is a person of interest in Belize after a neighbor was found shot to death, but the tech pioneer is now a person of interest at a South Bay technology conference.
The founder of the internet security firm McAfee is back in Silicon Valley, promising he has a way to make the internet hack-proof. He'll unveil details this weekend and everyone is paying attention.
"Is it going to be John McAfee or somebody else? Is it going to be Elon Musk? It's going to be somebody like that who has decided to jump well past any boundaries we've ever expected before," eCommera President John Squire told ABC7 News.
Internet security is important to online retailers who reaped over $225 billion in sales last year, and to banks, but Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak wonders if McAfee can create iron-clad security with the existing internet.
"How do you modify the existing infrastructure that is so huge? It's almost like saying we're going to totally get rid of highways and cars and go to some other under-the-ground transportation. We'd have to build it all and destroy what we're used to," Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak said.
While online commerce is a concern, tech pioneer Nolan Bushnell, the founder of Atari, says hack attacks become more critical as more devices, from toothbrushes to coffee makers, will be connected to the internet.
"Those items may sound like they don't need security, but they really need it in a big way. Some hacker can turn on my coffee pot when I'm on vacation. Things like that can be a problem," Bushnell said.
McAfee's escape from Belize and crazy man image, engineers say, brand him as an out-of-the-box thinker. He left the security company that bears his name years ago, yet Silicon Valley embraces people who keep coming up with brash new ideas.
The unconventional, risk-taking, visionary John McAfee will be speaking at the San Jose Convention Center Saturday afternoon.