By: Demetrios Salpoglou
The holiday season is a very busy time of year, and there is no denying the convenience of online shopping. While online orders make getting all your gifts delivered a breeze, it can also put you at risk of box bandits stealing your packages. Read below for our tips on steps you can take to avoid having your holidays ruined by thieves!
- Get Tracking Updates: These days, delivery companies offer detailed package tracking reports. It is a good idea to get text or email updates to let you know when your package is delivered. The sooner you know a package has arrived, the sooner you can report it if it is missing.
- Install Motion-Sensing Lights: It gets dark outside much earlier in the winter, which can offer package thieves a sense of invisibility. Installing motion-sensing lights near your front door can deter box bandits by startling them, and making them believe someone is home.
- Get Help from Neighbors: If you are not home but know that a trusted neighbor is, ask them to hold on to deliveries until you are home. Offer them a sweet thank you with some cookies and hot cocoa!
- Security Cameras: In addition to lights, there are motion-detecting security cameras as well. These cameras can notify you as soon as any movement is sensed—whether it is the delivery man dropping off a package, or a potential thief! As an added bonus, a visible camera in itself could be enough to ward any unwanted visitors off your porch.
- Notify the Post Office of any Vacations: If you tell your post office when you are going away, they can hold your mail and packages while you are gone. That way you can rest easy that your packages are in a secure location, and pick them up when you return!
- Be Mindful of any Unusual Activity: Box bandits pay attention to delivery trucks—they often follow them to a neighborhood, and keep an eye on where packages are being delivered. If you see suspicious cars following delivery trucks in your neighborhood, be mindful of it. Let your neighbors know so that you can all look out for each other!
- Take Advantage of In-Store Pickup: Oftentimes when online shopping you can choose an “in-store pickup” option. Even if the store closest to you doesn’t have a specific item in stock, they can usually send it from another store or their warehouse to the location closest to you. By selecting in-store pickup you can experience the convenience of online shopping and the peace of mind of not having a package sitting on your porch unattended.
- Smart Home Options: If you have a smart home front door lock, you can be notified when a delivery driver is at your residence with a package and ask them to place it inside your entryway. Smart locks allow you to control unlocking your front door from your phone. As soon as the package has been delivered, you can lock the door once again from your phone. Keep in mind this is an option that the delivery driver must agree to.
- Use a Package Receipt Service: Sometimes local businesses will accept your deliveries for a fee. While this adds an additional charge to the shipping you may already be paying for, can you really put a price on peace of mind?
- Avoid Posting on Social Media about Being Away from Home: While it can be fun to share photos or status updates about vacations, be mindful of who is seeing your profile. If you don’t have adequate privacy features, these posts can make you vulnerable to porch thieves who know you are not home.
By taking these extra steps and increasing your security, you can feel more comfortable getting your packages delivered this holiday season!