Every week brings new details of the negative externalities of social media and e-commerce websites. But fake bots aren’t the only wrongdoers trying to find anonymous hiding places online to harm Americans. With deadlier consequences than election interference, online criminal enterprises posing as pharmacies are selling adulterated or counterfeit drugs.
The problems are severe. Anonymity fueled online pharmacies have become “notorious for selling unapproved, substandard, counterfeit and falsified medicine.” Recent reports show that more than half of online pharmacies offer controlled substances, with 40 percent of them offering one or more of the drugs frequently adulterated with fentanyl.
This is a crisis — a recent study by the National Association of Boards of Pharmacy found that 95.7 percent of online pharmacies were out of compliance with state and federal law and applicable safety standards.