U.S. flag An official website of the United States government
  1. Home
  2. Drugs
  3. Resources for You | Drugs
  4. Drug Information for Consumers
  5. Buying & Using Medicine Safely
  6. Quick Tips for Buying Medicines Over the Internet
  7. BeSafeRx: Your Source for Online Pharmacy Information
  8. Considering an Online Pharmacy?
  1. BeSafeRx: Your Source for Online Pharmacy Information

Considering an Online Pharmacy?

Woman Holding Phone and a Bottle of Medication

Tips for Buying Medicine Online

Consumers may turn to online pharmacies because of convenience, privacy and cost savings; however, some websites sell medicines that are dangerous or even deadly. Protect your health by recognizing the signs of safe and unsafe online pharmacies.

Before ordering prescription medicine online, it is important to know whether you are using a safe online pharmacy.

Safe Signs – Your online pharmacy is likely safe if it:

Shield with checkmark icon
  • Always requires a doctor’s prescription
  • Provides a physical address and telephone number in the United States
  • Has a licensed pharmacist on staff to answer your questions
  • Is licensed with a state board of pharmacy

Warning Signs – Your online pharmacy may be an unsafe website if it:

Shield with exclamation point icon
  • Does not require a doctor’s prescription
  • Is not licensed in the United States and by your state board of pharmacy
  • Does not have a licensed pharmacist on staff to answer your questions
  • Sends medicine that looks different than what you receive at your local pharmacy, or arrives in packaging that is broken, damaged, in a foreign language, has no expiration date, or is expired
  • Offers deep discounts or prices that seem too good to be true
  • Charges you for products you never ordered or received
  • Does not provide clear written protections of your personal and financial information, or sells it to other websites

 

Back to Top