The online revolution has brought us many benefits when it comes to shopping for medical supplies. We are able to visit online pharmacies and order the meds that we want in the comfort of our own home, any time of the day or night. We can compare costs to find the best deal between websites, but, though we may not realize it, we could be putting ourselves at grave risk.
The truth is, that the number of rogue pharmacies online completely dwarfs the legitimate and safe stores. For the average shopper, it can be almost impossible to tell the difference, we are going to take a look at the dangers of purchasing pills from these scam businesses.
There are a number of different issues if you end up purchasing pills from a rogue pharmacy. We are going to divide them between major and minor risks. The major risks are both very likely to happen and incredibly serious when they do. The minor risks are either less likely to happen or are only a relatively slight annoyance when they do.
- Fake, counterfeit or low-quality pills
- Identity theft
- Nuisance calls
- Hassle and disappointment
Fake, Counterfeit and Low-Quality Drugs
This is the biggest risk when ordering from an unreliable pharmacy store. While often, customers of such a store won’t fully appreciate the dangers of the pills they are taking, other people will suffer very serious health effects.
Some people will only realize the pills are fake when they don’t get the results they are used to. For others this isn’t an option, only learning of their mistake when their illness continues to the point where new symptoms become apparent.
The problem with fake and low-quality drugs is that you have no idea what is in them. They may have the correct ingredients or they may not, there is no way of knowing without testing the pills. Even if they have the correct ingredients, is it in the right amounts? Again, there is no way of knowing. With the wrong amount of the active ingredients potentially having extremely dire consequences to your health.
Make no mistake, people die from fake pills
These low-quality drugs are manufactured in countries like India, Pakistan and China.
They don’t normally tell you where the pills are produced, however, and the conditions in which they are manufactured are also unknown. They won’t be operating with any regulation, and the production line will be overseen by people with no qualifications.
The conditions may be unsanitary and not the sterile conditions a pharmaceutical facility should have.
Would you hand your credit card to an anonymous person in an unknown country? Of course, you wouldn’t. But that is exactly what you are doing when ordering pills from a rogue online pharmacy.
Rarely do these pharmacies give an address for their business. Even when they do, it is a fake address often of a location which doesn’t exist. They will often claim to be located in the US or Canada, but when their address is checked this turns out to be false.
We have seen reports, of people having strange charges added to their credit card bill after shopping for pills online. While you can often get these charges removed, this is only if you notice and if the credit card company accepts what you are saying.
Sometimes these unreliable stores don’t even have the most basic of security measures on their sites. This allows for anyone to intercept the information you fill out on their forms. This will include your personal details and payment information.
Other types of fraud include taking payment using an untraceable means of transaction, like wire transfer or cryptocurrencies, then not supplying the meds. This means you have no way to get your money back if the order doesn’t arrive or the pills are defective.
This is another potential risk when dealing with scam drugstores. It isn’t one which we have seen too much evidence of, however, which is why we are classifying it as a minor risk. It is fortunate that we don’t see this often, as having your details stolen and used by criminals is going to make you liable for the things they do using your information.
This is a fairly common problem when you give your details to a dubious online pill seller. Though most email accounts will filter out spam messages, some can still find their way through.
Somewhat more of an annoyance than spam emails, are the phone calls you will get from people trying to sell you more pills and other things. If you are giving your phone number to scam merchants don’t be surprised if they sell your details on to other con men.
Hassle and Disappointment
When ordering pills from a rogue website it is frequently not as easy and as quick as they want you to believe. While they may make claims of fast delivery, the reality is often very different. Orders can be blocked by customs or they may require an extra fee to be paid. Shipping often takes far longer than it is meant to even if it goes through customs without a problem.
If you need to contact customer support on one of these sites, you are frequently going to have problems. You may find that their phone line goes unanswered and your emails ignored. This will result in you losing the money spent and having to try to claim it back through the credit card company.
As we have shown, there are many reasons to be on your guard when ordering medication online. However, it can be very difficult to uncover which pharmacies are safe to use and which will give you the trouble we have outlined. One pharmacy may appear as legitimate as another, it is only with experience that the rogue drugstores become obvious. The problem of dangerous drugs is a big concern worldwide and the rogue online pharmacies which sell them are a growing issue as well.
Hopefully, we have opened your eyes to the risks and motivated you to take more care when you next look to save some money on your medications online.