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June 11, 2020

FDA Announces Pilot Program to Combat Illegal Availability of Online Opioid Sales

The FDA announced a new pilot program that would have domain name companies joining the efforts to combat illegal online opioid sales. If the FDA issues a warning letter to a website operator, and the website operator does not adequately respond, the FDA will notify the applicable internet registry. The internet registry can then review the FDA’s notifications and decide whether to take further action, such as suspending or blocking the domain name. Three internet registries – Neustar, Verisign, and Public Interest Registry – have signed on to participate in the pilot.

The program would be administered by the FDA, in coordination with the National Telecommunications and Information Administration. After four months, the agencies will determine how effective the program is as a potential solution to curbing the illegal online sales of opioids.