The Internet is involved in nearly every aspect of American’s lives these days. Banking, communication, research, and navigation are all done primarily on the Internet. With the popularity of the World Wide Web growing, it was only a matter of time before it started to leak into the world of drug addiction.
Buying prescription drugs on the Internet is hardly a new thing. Individuals have bought painkillers and other drugs from shady pharmacies online for years. After several crackdowns on online pharmacies, dealers have needed to find new means of getting substances to addicts online.
The vast majority of the illegal drug trading online today is done on what is known as the Deep Web. This is the portion of the Internet that is not discoverable by search engines. The Surface web refers to the Internet that the majority of people use. Search engines index the Surface web, and these websites are discoverable using search engines like Google or Bing. The Deep Web has been estimated to be 4,000-5,000 times larger than the Surface Web. It is here where addicts meet a dealer and order their drug of choice. Chinese criminals seem to be at the forefront, or at least heavily involved with the illegal Internet drug trade, using bit coins as currency to facilitate the trading, and operate from both Mainland China and Hong Kong.
While in active addiction, addicts became masterminds in the art of procuring their drugs of choice. It used to be that the best way to get someone clean was to keep them contained – in a lockdown facility to prevent them from drug seeking behavior. Addicts are told to stay away from people, places and things related to their addiction.
Since drugs are accessible everywhere now, including the web, recovery has to be all encompassing. It may have been an addict’s thought that changing locations and “starting fresh” would be sufficient to beat addiction. Running away from addiction is no longer an option. Availability and therefore temptation is stronger than ever, and addicts need to have the tools necessary to face these temptations.
The recovery program at Harmony Foundation provides the tools to combat these inevitable temptations – including group and individual counseling, 12 step support meetings, aftercare, alumni support and highly credentialed addiction therapists to help addicts sobriety have staying power, even when faced with explicit opportunities to fall prey to temptations.