So how easy is it to buy drugs on the Internet?

You may want to do this activity with your child - please choose one of the three options:

Option 1: The Center on Alcohol Marketing & Youth provides a gallery of alcohol advertisements and the option to search by product brand. Browse through some of the advertisements and make note of characteristics that may appeal to youth. What are common themes that you notice?

Option 2: Go online and type “buy alcohol” in the search box. Explore sites that offer ways to purchase beer, wine, or liquor. Does is require you to provide proof of legal age to purchase? How is documentation verified? Type a search for “buy cigarettes.” How do you prove that you are 18 years of age or older? How easy or difficult is it to purchase tobacco or alcohol online even if you are underage?

Option 3: Go online and type “buy drugs”. There are many websites that look like legitimate sources for buying prescription drugs. But it is a common practice for many of these sites to sell drugs that are not the identical composition of the prescription drug being advertised. Often, these drugs contain ingredients that are not disclosed and that could be harmful when taken. Also, many websites sell illicit drugs, such as the date rape drug or amphetamines. As with prescription drugs, even these illicit drugs may contain unknown ingredients that make the drug even more dangerous.

Option 4: If you do not have access to the internet, browse through popular magazines and count the number of ads you find for alcohol and tobacco, or count posters and billboards in your community that advertise alcohol and tobacco. Pick out characteristics of the ads that make them appealing to youth. What are some common themes that you notice?