A report by Safewise revealed that 64.1% of Americans fell victim to package theft in 2021, resulting in over $2 billion in stolen goods. This act, often referred to as porch piracy, is most common in metropolitan areas, but happens throughout the entire country. Packages are lifted most around the winter holidays and during the summer when people are on vacation.
Even though the average value of stolen merchandise was only $50, tracking, reporting, and coordinating refunds for stolen packages is an administrative burden you could do without. Here are some simple tips for preventing package theft.
Track your packages closely
Keeping tabs on your packages makes it easier to arrange to receive them and helps you notice if they’ve gone missing. Sign up to receive shipping notifications by text or email when you order something. Keep your tracking number somewhere convenient and check on your package’s status from time to time. Follow up on any deliveries that don’t arrive on time.
Don’t ship packages to your door when you’re not home
If you can’t be home to receive your shipments during the day, consider having them delivered somewhere where they won’t sit unattended for hours. Send packages to your office or a friend who will be home during the delivery window.
Some shipping companies, including Amazon, will deliver packages to a secure locker location where they will be safely stored until you retrieve them. You may also be able to ship deliveries to your local post office.
If you’re purchasing from an organization with a local storefront, you might opt to have the item shipped to the store.
Leave delivery instructions
Many shipping methods enable you to leave specific delivery instructions. Use this space to direct the driver to a secure place to stash the package. Ask them to place the box behind a potted plant, at the back door, under a bench, or wherever it will be out of sight.
Install a video surveillance system
Not only do security cameras deter thieves, but they also enable you to monitor your home from a distance. Set up video notifications to alert you when your camera’s motion sensor goes off. That way, you’ll know any time someone approaches your porch. If you see a package has been delivered, text a friend in the neighborhood and ask them to bring it inside for you!
With our ever-increasing tendency to shop online, it’s not surprising that instances of package theft continue to go up. If a package goes missing, report it to the sender and the delivery service. Usually, they will be happy to reissue the item or provide a refund. You should also report stolen packages to the police. Even though the chances that they can recover your stolen goods are often slim, your report will help them stay on top of theft trends.
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