Research has shown that 74% of all U.S. adults use the Internet, and 61% have looked for health or medical information on the Internet. Additionally, 49% have accessed a website that provides information about a specific medical condition or problem. Many people get health information from the Internet but are left on their own to determine if it’s credible. This is one area where pharma companies can restore trust and excel.

Suppose you’re on Facebook or Instagram, and Meta has determined you may be interested in cancer treatments. In that case, you may have seen an ad for a dangerous cancer treatment, or one of the 20 or so others recently running from the CHIPSA hospital in Mexico near the US border, all of which are publicly listed in Meta’s Ad Library. They are part of a pattern on Facebook of ads that make misleading or false health claims targeted at cancer patients.

Gadget firms — starting with Apple and now Fitbit, which Google owns — are selling wearable devices that check heartbeat rhythms and alert users when something is out of sync, according to KHN.com. Although the gadgets are a technical achievement, some cardiologists say the information the devices produce isn’t always helpful. Notifications from the devices aren’t definitive diagnoses.