Drink spiking under-reported

A recent report, commissioned by the Ministerial Council on Drug Strategy and prepared by the Australian Institute of Criminology, has highlighted a number of important issues associated with drink spiking, including estimates of prevalence, prevention and education strategies and laws governing drink spiking. A range of data was collected on information about victim's experiences. This data found that drink spiking is under-reported to the police, medical agencies and other authorities. Overall, only one quarter of victims who rang into the hotline reported the incident to police. Just over 20 per cent reported to a doctor while just under 20 per cent reported to a hospital. About 13 per cent reported the incident to bar staff. Forty-three per cent of incidents that were reported to police were reported on either the day of the incident or the day after, while 31 per cent were not reported until at least a week had passed (some were longer than a month). A high proportion (87%) of victims who reported to a hospital did so within a day - often because they required treatment.

Per cent of drink spiking incidents reported to hotline that were reported to authorities (n=201) [see attached PDF for graph]


  • Taylor N, Prichard J & Charlton K 2004. National project on drink spiking: investigating the nature and extent of drink spiking in Australia. Report prepared for the Ministerial Council on Drug Strategy, Canberra