I still don’t understand how online pharmacies work. The validation of a subscriber, the prescription by “resident” pharmacists, and the favorites (including the likes of Viagra and Cialis), just don’t pass the smell test. Therefore I am not surprised that pharmaceutical spam is so prevalent. Spam and online pharmacies are explicably intertwined, and doing quite well.
Media Life just reported on the growth in online pharmacy traffic, and the results are staggering. During Q4, 2004, the sites attracted roughly ten percent of all US internet users, and increase of 14% versus the same period in 2003, according to ComScore.
The more frightening part of this issue is, however, that almost two-thirds of the users polled did not notify their primary physician that they were purchasing medications online. While price and convenience topped the list of reasons why people use online pharmacies, this unbridled approach to acquiring drugs is going to cause serious problems down the road (as if it isn’t already a serious issue).
Keep in mind, some of the big outfits such as Walmart and Walgreens require existing prescriptions from local doctors, as well as picking up medications in store. But many others do not, and spammers hiding in the shadows are unlikely to bear the brunt of any retaliatory action.