Obtaining prescription drugs from rogue pharmacies online just got a little bit harder, with Google Inc. agreeing to forfeit $500 million for allowing online Canadian pharmacies to place ads targeting U.S. consumers in search of medicines like OxyContin, according to the U.S. Justice Department. The forfeiture is one of the largest ever in the U.S., the DOJ said. Google, for its part, has acknowledged that it improperly assisted Canadian online pharmacy advertisers and said it has banned the advertising of prescription drugs in the U.S. by Canadian pharmacies. “It’s obvious with hindsight that we shouldn’t have allowed these ads on Google in the first place,” the company said in a statement.
Better late than never.