Illegal Goods on Digital & Social Media Platforms

Many members have been concerned about the advertising of illegal therapeutic goods on digital and social media platforms, which are non-exempt therapeutic goods that are required to be on the ARTG due to importation or supply in Australia, but are not (excluding valid personal importation).

CMA has raised this issue through our representation on the Therapeutic Goods Advertising Consultative Committee, and can provide members the following insights:

The TGA has established relationships with a number of digital platforms, including as eBay, Amazon, Meta and Tiktok, to prevent and remove unlawful advertising of therapeutic goods. These relationships allow the TGA to identify specific advertisements of concern and request the platforms to remove them.

The TGA also maintains regular contact with the platforms, to advise them of the TGA’s legislation, with the aim of preventing unlawful advertising before it is published. This advice may be general, or more specifically related to priority issues.

Individual platforms working with the TGA can establish custom solutions with significant impact. This often includes the development of filters to identify problematic postings. Other bespoke solutions may be forthcoming depending on the specific framework for each platform.

As an example, following liaison with the TGA, eBay amended their Prescription and over-the-counter medicines policy (including Listed medicines) to specifically require relevant listings to display the ARTG number, and the platform enforces this requirement via a custom field.

While the TGA has its own intelligence sources, the TGA cannot monitor all activity and also relies upon stakeholder reports of illegal goods on digital platforms to take further action. Please use the Reporting Portal on the TGA website for all reports of illegal goods on digital and social media platforms to ensure they are logged into the TGA investigation database.

CMA has established a line of reporting to elevate particularly egregious matters to the TGA. Contact CMA’s regulatory affairs at to report any serious concerns.



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