Blockbuster Drugs Generate Blockbuster ImitationsIn 2004, the FDA published its first comprehensive report on drug counterfeiting that indicated it was becoming a growing public safety issue enabled by the ease of selling on the black market through online channels.
Noting a rapid increase in counterfeiting activity, the FDA decided to create the Counterfeit Alert Network (CAN). This network is a cooperative effort of 13 different organizations who collaborate to share counterfeiting information like reporting data on specific counterfeit incidents.
RFID as a Safety Measure
One of the core strategies for combating this problem was to leverage RFID technology to improve authentication. The agency launched an RFID Work Group for promoting RFID’s adoption in 2004 with the main goal stated by then acting FDA Commissioner Dr. Lester M. Crawford "to increase the safety of medications consumers receive by creating the capacity to track a drug from the manufacturer all the way to the pharmacy."
Security That Lasts More Than Four Hours
Companies like Johnson & Johnson, Pfizer, Purdue Pharma and GlaxoSmithKline were early adopters and since 2007, well-known prescription drugs like Viagra, OxyContin other painkillers like Palladone are tracked with RFID technology.