Sunday, August 9, 2020
Home Science & Technology Twitter used by illegal online pharmacies to pedal drugs

Twitter used by illegal online pharmacies to pedal drugs

New York: Illegal online pharmacies are using Twitter to promote prescription drug abuse of controlled substances.

“This study is the first to establish an empirical link between Twitter content and illicit online pharmacies which promote the illegal sale of drugs that have significant abuse potential,” said study co-author Timothy Mackey from University of California-San Diego.

“Our results are concerning, as the study found over 45,000 tweets that promoted drug abuse even though we only looked at a two-week period of tweets,” Mackey added.

According to the US Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) and National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA), young adults are the biggest abusers of prescription opioid pain relievers, ADHD stimulants, and anti-anxiety drugs.

The study conducted surveillance and content analysis of over two million tweets using the Twitter public streaming application programming interface and used assisted machine learning.

Tweets were analysed to determine if they discussed drug abuse issues, whether they favourably promoted drug abuse behaviour, and were also examined to see if they directly enabled the illegal access to controlled substances by online pharmacies.

Mackey said the study findings are extremely troubling.

“When we examined links included in a subset of the tweets that discussed drug abuse, we discovered that 76 percent of these tweets included a link to an online marketing affiliate advertising the sale of the controlled substance valium, a tranquillizer that is commonly abused,” he said.

Buying prescription drugs from illegal online pharmacies also endanger consumers financial information, putting them at risk of identity theft, according to experts.

The study was published in the Journal of Medical Internet Research (JMIR). (IANS) (image courtesy:wsjgadjets.ndtv.com)

STAY CONNECTED

18,959FansLike
362FollowersFollow
1,781FollowersFollow

Most Popular

Richa Chadha Pleased to see Volunteers Working for Elderly Amid Pandemic

Actress Richa Chadha points out senior citizens need extra care and attention amid the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic. She recently interacted with volunteers of foundations...

Bhagavad Gita: Here is the Collection of Sanskrit Verses from Dhyana Yoga

The Yoga of Meditation uncovered by Krishna is arranged in sixth Chapter, Dhyana Yoga of Bhagavad Gita. Sri Krishna uncovers the Yoga of Meditation...

Facebook Produces 600 Homes, 70% Reserved for Low-Income Residents

Facebook has produced and preserved approximately 600 affordable homes near its headquarters in Menlo Park, California, of which roughly 70 per cent are reserved...

Google, IBM, Microsoft AI Datasets Show Gender Bias

Revealing another dark side of trained Artificial Intelligence (AI) models, new research has claimed that Google AI datasets identified most women wearing masks as...

This Year Has Been a Wake-Up Call for Us: Bhumi Pednekar

This year has been a wake-up call for us, and if we do not work towards maintaining a balance, our cities will continue to...

Anushka Sharma: Watching Movies Doesn’t Always Help You Understand Them Better

Actress Anushka Sharma says watching films does not always help understand the medium better, and that experiences in life help add value to storytelling,...

Sadhguru: Youth is the Most Alive, Idealistic, and Energetic

Spiritual leader and author Sadhguru believes in the potential of the youth. "Youth has enormous potential. If we can inspire them to identify with humanity...

Increase in Deforestation in Brazilian Amazon Causes Massive Forest Destruction

Deforestation in the Brazilian Amazon increased 34.5 per cent between August 2019 and July 2020, with a total of 9,205 square km of forest...

Recent Comments