The two firms plan to share information and work together to educate consumers about the dangers of buying drugs online, where rogue pharmacies are unregulated and often linked to criminal activity, according to a report on Dark Reading.
Google and GoDaddy will be joined by other prominent companies with a hand in online commerce, including American Express, eNom, MasterCard,
Microsoft, Network Solutions, Neustar, PayPal, Visa, and Yahoo.
The decision to form the group stemmed from the recent
White House Intellectual Property Health and Safety Forum in June. That gathering pledged to encourage cooperation between government and industry to address illegal online activity, and specifically mentioned “illegal Internet pharmacies.” It comes amid rising
concerns pertaining to widespread advertisement for and consumption of medication
obtained online without a prescription.
“The announced collaboration is a huge win for public health, and marks the first time that so
many Internet commerce stakeholders have worked together on a comprehensive
solution to address the rogue online drug sellers posing as Internet
pharmacies,” said Libby Baney, advisor at B&D Consulting who counsels the Alliance for Safe
Online Pharmacies (ASOP).
The sale of phony pharmaceuticals has been linked to prominent cyber criminal organizations and specific families of malware, such as Gumblar – with infected computers used to push out spam e-mail containing offers for fake Viagra, knockoff Rolex watches and other goods.