In this section you can read all the latest news about counterfeit and substandard medicines from around Europe and the world.

The Center for Safe Internet Pharmacies (CSIP) and the Alliance for Safe Online Pharmacies (ASOP) released a public service announcement this week that will run in New York City’s Times Square through January 2015. The 520 square foot advertisement warns consumers to be cautious when purchasing prescription drugs online because it could be “gambling with your life”.

Hosted by the Alliance for Safe Online Pharmacies (ASOP), the Alliance for Safe Online Pharmacies in the EU (ASOP EU) and the Center for Safe Internet Pharmacies (CSIP) the seminar will take place in the Microsoft Centre in Brussels, on Thursday, 17th July 2014. The objectives of the seminar are to share information about the international issue of illegal online medicine sellers, and to demonstrate and discuss the committed transatlantic work that stakeholders are doing to combat the problem as well to discuss the opportunities to enhance transatlantic cooperation to protect patient online.

Mike Isles Executive director addressed the issues of the rising crime of illegal online rogue medicine sellers at the recently held pan European meeting convened by EFPIA – the European Federation of Pharmaceutical Industries and Associations at the Lyon Congress centre. Highlighting recent consumer research he made it clear that the public needed to be better informed. The activities of ASOP EU will certainly help this but it will require global, regional and local initiatives to raise the level of awareness to an effective level.

Paris, France - Committed to the fight against counterfeiting for many years, Sanofi now reveals how Europeans perceive counterfeit drugs through a survey of 5,010 people in France, Germany, Italy, Spain and the United Kingdom. "The general public is not sufficiently informed about the existence of counterfeit drugs and the risks it may be taking in certain purchasing situations. Counterfeit medicines are a real danger to patients' health. For example, they may not contain the same amount of active ingredient as the genuine drug or not meet the same requirements in terms of quality, efficiency and safety as the genuine treatments", said Dr Caroline Atlani, anti-counterfeiting coordination director at Sanofi.

At the Global Forum on Access to Safe Medicines, held from 2nd to 4th April 2014 in London, a new collaborative approach to preventing criminals selling fake medicines via the internet was revealed. Characterised as a Memorandum of Understanding this will require leading internet stakeholders to sign up to deliver concrete voluntary actions to combat fake pharmacy websites.