The first six words of Andy Greenberg’s Tuesday story in Forbes are about all I needed to read: “In the shady world of online pharmacies…”

Oh boy — here we go again.

Hey, I know there are a lot of rogue pharmacies out there. That’s why I started — to help people avoid rogue online pharmacies. But there are licensed, legitimate online pharmacies out there, too — and it’s not fair to consumers to scare them away from the Internet as an avenue for purchasing prescription drugs.

If you know what you’re doing, it’s relatively easy to be safe when you buy prescription drugs online. Here are two ways:

1. Use, which only permits prescreened, licensed online and mail-order pharmacies in its database.
2. If you would rather search on your own, follow these five tips.

The main problem I have with the Forbes piece is that it suggests that virtually all online pharmacies don’t require prescriptions, sell counterfeit medications, and send you spam e-mails. Then it suggests that these same pharmacies are spending lots of money in search marketing and other forms of advertising on the Web. Both of these assertions are patently false.

eDrugSearch - save on medication costs and get free drug coupons

eDrugSearch - save on medication costs and get free drug coupons

For an online pharmacy to advertise through Google AdWords, for example, it must meet specific criteria that includes verification of its licensing by PharmacyChecker. Online pharmacies that send spam e-mails and distribute counterfeit medications need not apply.

The article is another bit of alarmism compliments (directly or indirectly) of Big Pharma’s PR machine — which is fighting tooth and nail against both access to Canadian pharmacy drugs by U.S. consumers and the preferred means of this access, the Internet.

Don’t believe the hype.

About Cary Byrd

eDrugSearch founder, Cary Byrd, has been called an “e-health innovator” by MarketIntellNow, interviewed by top pharmaceutical industry journalists, invited to Matthew Holt’s Health 2.0 Conference and a Consumer Report's health summit, and highlighted on numerous health blogs. - Search. Compare. Save.

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