E-Commerce Times Talkback
See Full Story
Last year, as part of a broad enforcement campaign, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement began seizing the domain names of websites involved in copyright infringement and the sale of counterfeit goods. ICE, a division of DHS, carried out the first phase of Operation In Our Sites in June 2010 when it seized the domain names of nine websites allegedly offering pirated movies. On November 29, 2010 -- the day now commonly known in the United States as "Cyber Monday" -- ICE carried out the second round of Operation In Our Sites by seizing 82 domain names from websites allegedly selling counterfeit goods.
Another concern of American consumers, particularly those without health insurance, is that U.S. actions conducted under the guise of intellectual property protection will take down safe and affordable online pharmacies based outside the United States. Despite the technical illegality of personal drug importation, for the last decade, millions of uninsured Americans, many who cannot afford drugs in the Untied States, have purchased genuine lower cost medication pursuant to a valid prescription from Canadian and other online pharmacies.
Such international mail order pharmacy occurs because the FDA does not prosecute individuals for personal prescription orders of non-controlled medication, and due the numbers of imported goods the FDA does not have the resources to stop them. It is feared that the ICE and the Office of the Intellectual Property Enforcement Coordinator will use its crackdown against online infringement and dangerous online pharmacies to stop safe personal drug importation by blocking access to safe international online pharmacies. That would be wrong and detrimental to the public health, as fewer people would get the medications they need.