By: Natalia Vera Matiz

The pharmaceutical advertising in social networks and our privacy data

Recently, in an article of the Washington Post[1], was raised the possible conflict between the ads of the pharmaceutical industry in sites like Facebook and Instagram, and the privacy data of the consumers.

Is not new for all of us, that the data brokers follow our digital print, and know such things as our preferences in products like shoes. Is surprising when you look for let’s say a new dress in a web site, and then in your social network that in theory is private, you see an announce related to the mentioned search.

When this happens related to an unimportant issue like shoes or dresses may be is not as worrying as when it is referred to a medicine that you need for a disease that you have and about which you have not said anything to your Facebook friends.

According to Kirsten Ostherr[2]Facebook can follow our preferences regarding health issues, when we look for information within the web, or when we give like to pages in Facebook related to a special sickness. When we do that, is easy to do the match, deliver this information to the pharmaceutical market, and as a result your illness is not private anymore.

The consequences of this  said Ostherr, goes from a fact respect the insurance companies  that can raise the prices based on the information that has about a patient, to lose jobs opportunities.

There is a major importance on know how to erase the digital print, in order to maintained your privacy, because at least for now, the laws are behind the technology.

[1]TIKU Nitasha. “Facebook has a Prescription: Mor Pharmaceutical Ads”. March, 2020. Available on the web page:

[2]OSTHERR Kirsten. “Facebook Knows a Ton About Your Health. Now they Want to Make Money off it”.  April, 2018. Available on the web page:

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