LONDON, UK: BrandShield Systems plc (AIM: BRSD), a leading provider of cybersecurity solutions for brand oriented digital risk protection, announced its findings following a disruption programme that was carried out together with the Pharmaceutical Security Institute (PSI) from December 2020 to November 2021, involving the monitoring, detecting, and removal of online threats.
Over the 12-month period, BrandShield took down over 850 rogue pharmacies across websites and social media, 4,000 social media posts, and more than 14,000 fraudulent marketplace listings, where a minimum estimated value of $1.8 million of counterfeits was removed. The report highlights the extent of global criminal fraud targeting both innocent patients and pharmaceutical companies.
The listings that were removed contained medicines relating to cancer, diabetes, asthma, Covid-19, and Alzheimer’s among others. Between December 2020 and November 2021, BrandShield analysed and removed several rogue pharmacies.
BrandShield’s analysis of social media platforms compared reported instances of pharmaceutical crime to the number of illegal posts removed. The report looked at marketplaces and online social platforms with over 100 reported fake listings. A popular social media platform stood out as the least compliant with only 33% of reported fraud removed, nearly two times less compliant than the other platforms reviewed. Indonesian marketplaces topped the list with the most sites removed, followed by India and the Philippines.
Marketplace Listing Removals by Country
● Indonesia (13,395)
● India (566)
● Philippines (171)
● Malaysia (135)
● Singapore (120)
Yoav Keren, Chief Executive Officer of BrandShield, commented: “Criminal fraudsters and scammers posing as reputable pharma companies are a major public health risk for the millions across the globe who are in the market looking for products to treat a range of life-threatening diseases.”
“In our work with PSI, we are taking the fight back to not only detect dubious online sellers but also remove these threats as they happen. Such a proactive approach ensures that patients are protected from further harm.”
C. Todd Ratcliffe, President and CEO of the Pharmaceutical Security Institute, added: “BrandShield was a natural selection as a vendor for us thanks to their proven takedown capabilities. They expeditiously neutralised growing threats, especially across platforms and in regions where patients are most vulnerable.
“It’s clear that criminal counterfeiters and fraudsters are an increasing threat to our members and their patients, and we’re emboldened by BrandShield’s technology and takedown capabilities to minimise the risk they pose to public health and patient safety.”
Pharmaceutical Security Institute is a non-profit trade association comprised of security directors from thirty-nine international research pharmaceutical manufacturers. PSI’s principal mission is to address the problem of counterfeiting, illegal diversion and major theft of pharmaceutical products to protect patient safety. PSI’s principal activities include the collection, analysis and dissemination of intelligence related to these criminal acts globally.