(WWLP) – There is a growing problem of international and domestic criminal drug networks mass-producing fake pills and falsely marketing them to the public as genuine prescription drugs.

The fentanyl drug is being flooded into the U.S. by criminal drug networks, according to the United States Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA).

According to dea.gov, false pills are cheap, commonly available, frequently contain fentanyl or methamphetamine, and may be deadly. Anyone with a smartphone, including minors, it is easily accessible for fake prescription pills to be bought on social media and e-commerce platforms.

The DEA also indicates that numerous fake pills are also created to resemble prescription opioids such as oxycodone, hydrocodone, and alprazolam or stimulants similar to amphetamines.

“It’s hard to spot counterfeit drugs, the only real way to know if a drug is counterfeit is through chemical analysis done in a laboratory,” said CDC. “Sometimes, counterfeit drugs differ in size, shape, or color, or are sold in poor-quality packaging, but they often appear identical to the real thing.”

“A reminder that pills purchased outside of a licensed pharmacy are illegal, dangerous, and potentially lethal,” said Connecticut State Police.

This year marks the first annual national fentanyl prevention and awareness day to recognize those who have died from the fentanyl drug.