Court settlement: Google agrees to fight illegal online pharmacies

Internet search giant commits to spending at least $250m over 5 years.


Afp August 09, 2014

SAN FRANCISCO:


Google has agreed in a court settlement to spend at least $250 million over the next five years to help fight illegal online pharmacies selling to US customers.


The US Internet search giant made the commitment in settling a lawsuit from shareholders alleging Google failed to take adequate measures to prevent foreign online pharmacies from using its advertising network.

The lawsuit was filed in 2011 after Google paid a $500 million settlement to the US government over charges that it sold advertisements to Canada-based online pharmacies which marketed drugs to Americans in violation of US law.

In a settlement filed in federal court in California, Google agreed to spend at least $50 million per year in each of the coming five years on “product quality operations, policy enforcement, and user safety initiative” to prevent the ads from appearing.

Google said its audit committee would set up a plan “to ensure compliance with federal and state laws and regulations” and to prevent the advertising of pharmaceuticals and supplements which violate the law running through its AdWords platform.

In the settlement with the US government, authorities said the online pharmacies from Canada used Google’s Adwords programs, which deliver ads based on a user’s browsing history and search queries, from 2003 to 2009. 

Published in The Express Tribune, August 10th, 2014.

Like Business on Facebook, follow @TribuneBiz on Twitter to stay informed and join in the conversation.

Our Publications

COMMENTS

Replying to X

Comments are moderated and generally will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive.

For more information, please see our Comments FAQ