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PRESCRIPTION AND PHARMACEUTICAL SCAMS: SICK AND WRONG

One of the major talking points in the current healthcare debate is whether medical coverage is a person’s right or privilege. While the pundits, politicians and every-day citizens wrestle over this contentious issue, an enterprising segment of society continues to take advantage of those who are looking for affordable medications.

There are two prevalent forms of Prescription and Pharmaceutical Scams; Junk Mail Scams featuring popular legitimate medications, weight loss pills/plans and male enhancement products, Online Fraud which often exploits those desperately looking for necessary medications at affordable prices..


Junk Mail Scams

A 2008 report by security company Commtouch revealed that out of all the spam email sent, over 40% was drug related. Considering the current state of healthcare expense, expect that number to rise. The criminals know a hot market when they see one.

If you have email you’ve seen the ads before, in fact, your junk folder is no doubt filled with these messages. Here are some sample subject lines of emails taken directly from my personal junk mail folder, each followed up directly with the truth.

GAIN 3INCHES #MAKE IT BIGGER#

Promises of “natural” male enhancement are bogus. The herbal supplements, salves, and lotions offer phony testimonials and pseudo-medical junk science.

If one of these products peaks your interest, check it out. There are numerous message boards online debunking the claims made by these shady companies. You will read post after post of men who came to the conclusion they were duped after paying good money and taking these unsanctioned pills for months on end.

There is no product available that will increase a man’s size, and some of these products can even be dangerous. Don’t fall for it!

TwoAmazing WeightLoss Sup1iments ForFree

The supplements and pills offered online with wild claims of weight and fat loss can be quite dangerous. Remember, there are no magic pills to lose weight while you sleep or drop cellulite from a targeted region of your body.

If these products were genuine or medically-sound, you would have heard about them by now from your doctor. There is a reason they are being advertised and sold through non-traditional channels by unqualified individuals. They are bogus!

BUY YOUR MEDICATIONS FOR 50% OFF. CANADIAN MEDS!

The emails offering genuine medications, normally featuring painkillers or ED drugs, normally point you to the websites covered in the next section of this story.

But as is the case with most spam emails, there is a reason the claims sound too good to be true. They are probably a scam!


Online Fraud

Medications are expensive. More and more folks who lose their healthcare coverage along with their jobs are finding themselves in a real bind. Unable to afford the medicines that are necessary for their health and survival, the exorbitant cost of the meds are normally well beyond the budgets of the unemployed.

For many, an attractive alternative is to purchase your medications at a reduced cost online. While there are legitimate online pharmacies, buyers beware.

As reported by PC World Magazine, a recent study by LegitScript of online pharmacies who advertise on the popular search engines, Bing, Yahoo and Google provided shocking results. Of the 41,983 pharmacy sites advertising, only 224 are considered legitimate with another 897 awaiting confirmation. That’s over 40,000 potential scam artists spending ad dollars to snag your business.

Many of these sites are foreign companies who promise to sell drugs at drastic reductions, sometimes as much as 80% off the normal price. What you are actually purchasing, however, are normally dangerous out-of-date prescriptions, or counterfeit placebo pills that are worthless. Well, worthless to you but money in the bank to the criminal who tricked you into buying them.

A legitimate online pharmacy will ask for a prescription from your doctor. He will have to phone, fax or email it to the company. They can then provide your medications, often at drastically reduced prices.

A scam online pharmacy promises to provide your pills without a prescription. They might have you fill out a form that their “doctors” will then approve before sending you the ordered meds. Even if you do receive the actual pills, this is completely illegal; you might as well be buying your drugs from a shady thug on the street corner.

If you aren’t sure about an online pharmacy, a little investigation will make it clear pretty quickly what kind of company you are dealing with. If they do list an address or phone number…Red Flag! If they only list a customer service number, give it a call. Most folks wouldn’t think to use it until after something has gone wrong, and then are surprised to find the listed “customer service” number is actually non-working or rings and rings without anyone ever answering.

If the address in your browser window looks like this, http://cheapdrugs.com/CTElhogCHGOO/bbsbjoBIBIOBbouboob/bohaO.htm, or if there isn’t a domain name but rather an IP address (http://107.15.26.857/cheapdrugs.com) do not consider using these sites. These are both indicators that the website will need to change name or locations at a moments notice to avoid be tracked down because they are a scam.

If you really want to be safe its best to check with the National Association of Boards and Pharmacies, details provided at the end of the post. They keep a list of legitimate online pharmacy websites.

Ordering your prescriptions online can be a great savings, but be sure the vendor you choose is a legitimate organization. Visiting a scam company might get you out-of-date meds, bogus pills, or real pills procured illegally. And if you bought your medication without providing a prescription, you very well could be breaking the law yourself.

The promise of cheap medication seems too good to pass up, but as you’ll find with most dream scenarios the promises are often empty or loaded. Trust your instincts and always do a little research before you spend your money with an unfamiliar company. When it comes to fulfilling your pharmaceutical needs, falling victim to a scam artist can endanger more than just your wallet; your very health could be at risk.

NOTE:
To research an online pharmacy or report one you believe to be a scam, check out
The National Association of Boards and Pharmacies
Napb.net
Or by phone, 847-698-6227

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