This post was originally published on July 7, 2020 and has been updated for accuracy and comprehensiveness.
With Amazon Prime Day among us, you’ll probably see a few packages lying around on your neighbor's front porch soon.
Unfortunately, packages left outside are ideal targets for theft. In 2020 alone, over 6 billion dollars worth of packages were stolen.
Without proper safety measures in place, it is quite easy for someone to casually walk up to a home and steal a package left out in the open. Learn the top package theft protection methods to keep your valuables and home protected.
1. Get a P.O. Box or Smart Locker
P.O. Boxes are safe and secure place to send packages, especially if you’re not going to be at your home during the day. You can get one at your local post office. Registration is quick and easy, and you can have peace of mind knowing professionals will safely handle your package.
Likewise, there are a growing number of companies that allow locker rentals for package deliveries. You can have your package sent to a specific location and pick it up at your convenience. Companies that provide locker rentals include:
2. Don’t Leave Packages on the Front Porch
If you must have a package delivered to your home, you can request the courier to leave it in an area other than your front porch. A package left out in the open is bound to garner attention by those passing by, which is why it is wise to put it somewhere less conspicuous.
Safer areas to leave your packages during the daytime include behind a gate or fence, the back porch/-patio area, garage, or behind any porch/patio furniture. Most large retailers allow comments on deliverables, so be as specific as you need to ensure the proper location.
3. Require a Signature for Deliveries
Most large delivery companies, such as FedEx, UPS, and Amazon, provide optional signature requirements to give shoppers peace of mind. However, sometimes the buyer must explicitly indicate a signature requirement for a package.
It is important to note that requiring a signature might result in additional shipping fees. It generally depends on the policy of the shipping provider, the size of the package, etc. So, keep that factor in mind, especially if you’re expecting a lot of packages.
4. Halt Your Packages While on Vacation or Away for an Extended Period
If you’re leaving for vacation or going to be out of town for the weekend, you want to halt any packages scheduled for delivery. The longer your packages sit outside, the more enticing it is for potential thieves to take them.
Companies like FedEx and USPS provide holding options to prevent mail and packages from being delivered while you’re away. FedEx can even hold a package onsite for you to pick up at your discretion.
5. Rely on a Security System to Keep Your Home and Packages Protected
A home security system can deter package pirates and ensure you get promptly notified of suspicious activity outside your door through an alert app on your phone.
You can use a video doorbell camera to keep a watchful eye on all of your deliverables from afar. Or, use smart locks to unlock your door remotely to allow trusted individuals to drop off packages inside.