With the busy upcoming Black Friday sale season, packages will be arriving freely on doorsteps across America. This also means porch pirates will be ready to plunder your packages before you even see them! According to Security.org, thieves ransacked packages from more than 25 million households during 90 days this past spring. So don’t be a victim – here are some great holiday crime prevention tips to help deter thieves from pillaging your goods.
Get your packages delivered to a central pick-up location.
Besides the post office, many retailers offer in-store pickups, shipping to a specific store, and/or delivery to a self-service location such as with Amazon Hub Lockers, which are available in 900 destinations across America.
Get your package delivered to your work.
This is a great option to choose if your boss/company allows employees to receive personal packages at work. Be sure to ask before you do so you don’t create any unwanted or unnecessary work conflict.
Have your package delivered to a neighbor.
If you know someone who will be home all day, ask if they’d be willing to receive your package for you. Think neighbors, friends, and relatives, who would love to receive your package for you to help thwart any would-be box bandits.
Install a home security system.
A professional monitoring alarm system will help give you peace of mind 24/7. Be sure to display the warning stickers and yard signs that come with the system as this can be enough for some porch pirates to look for another easier home to target. If you go this route, ensure the security system keypad can’t be seen outside from a door or window to notice if it’s armed or not.
Install a tech-savvy video doorbell.
A smart doorbell gives you immediate access through your smartphone to see who’s at your door. Set up your system to subscribe to video alerts so you’ll be notified as soon as the doorbell is rung or detects motion. Some offer two-way audio so you can yell some pirate words to try and scare them away if there’s something nefarious going on. Video is cloud-stored through most service providers, which you can then turn over to police in the case of porch pirate theft.
Rent a secure post office box.
If you plan on hauling in the loot this holiday season, consider renting a convenient post office box where you can pick up items when it’s convenient to do so.
Secure your at-home delivery.
BoxLock offers contactless delivery so when a package arrives at your home, the driver simply scans the smart lock to open the secured container and places the item inside awaiting your retrieval; just be sure the container itself isn’t something that can be easily picked up and carried away. If you absolutely must have a parcel delivered at home when you’re not there, ask the driver to leave it in a more out-of-the-way location than the obvious front door. Maybe you’ve got a lawn storage shed in the backyard that can be padlocked? The delivery person may not be too happy about having to trek around your yard, but they will be ensuring your parcel delivery in the end.
Track your deliveries.
Besides opting for a required signature, track your deliveries through an app or by email/text. This will give you real-time notifications as to where your parcel is and when it’s going out for delivery.
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Author – Connie Motz