While porch pirates pilfer perfectly placed packages any time of year (say that three times fast!), the holiday shopping season provides them with ample opportunities.
If you’re planning to buy holiday gifts online, you will more than likely have those items arriving on your doorstep. This can be an invitation for people to steal from right under your nose.
Last year, the United States Postal Service delivered more than 15 billion mailed items during the holiday season. UPS is expecting to handle more than 700 million packages this year.
- Don’t leave your mail or parcels unattended—especially overnight.
- Be a buddy—help a neighbor in need. If you have a stay-at-home neighbor, enlist their help or put a hold on your mail at the Post Office.
- Consider an alternate shipping address. Some employers will allow you to ship small amounts of personal items to your work location. Inquire whether your employer will allow you to do so, and plan your shipment accordingly.
- It’s 3 p.m.; do you know where your package is? The United States Postal Service provides real-time tracking for a wide-range of products. UPS and Fedex also offer similar features.
- Customize your delivery. Fedex, UPS, and The United States Postal Service all offer options to require a signature upon delivery, change the time and location of a delivery, or hold a package until you are able to receive it. USPS even allows you to redirect most packages while in transit. There is a fee associated with some of these services.
- Install security cameras on your residence. Surveillance video and images help law enforcement catch mail thieves and bring them to justice, but most thieves know to stay away from homes with visible security cameras.
Please also remember to report suspicious activity immediately. If you notice an unfamiliar vehicle following behind the USPS truck or unknown persons hovering around mailboxes, report the activity to your local police department and local office of the U.S. Postal Inspection Service (1-877-876-2455) immediately. Similarly, UPS and Fedex encourage you to contact them if you notice something amiss.