In a new program for North Carolina, Secretary of State Elaine Marshall has set up a public awareness campaign for her state that allows North Carolinians to check whether the online pharmacy they want to purchase from is genuine, the News & Observer reports.

Dubbed “Verify Before you Buy,” the new program aims to protect patients from counterfeit prescription medication and compromised fake online pharmacy websites.  Utilizing web search technology powered by LegitScript, Verify Before you Buy allows medication shoppers to check the veracity of the online pharmacy they are considering using.  The goal, according to the News & Observer, is to educate consumers about the dangers posed by fake web pharmacies.

Secretary Marshall told the News & Observer that she has “seen undercover videos … of pills being made in Mexico in one of those roadside cement mixers where they put in highway paint for the yellow color. I don’t know how much lead content there’s got to be in that – a tremendous amount.”

According to the National Association of Boards of Pharmacy, 96% of online pharmacies operate “in conflict with pharmacy laws and practice standards,” and noted that 20 new illegal pharmacies appear online each day.

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