Keep your mail, packages safe from porch pirates

Reporter: Andryanna Sheppard
Published: Updated:

The holiday season is a bustling time for the United States Postal Service (USPS), with millions of packages and letters in transit. However, with the rise in mail theft, it’s crucial to take steps to keep your holiday mail safe.

Between Thanksgiving and New Yearā€™s Day, the USPS handles an astounding 800 million packages and a staggering 15 billion pieces of mail. Between October 2022 and March 2023, over 300 mail carriers fell victim to robbery, and more than 25,000 cases of mail theft were reported nationwide. With such a high volume, it’s essential to consider the safety of your deliveries.

Carrier delivering packages, Credit: WINK News

A prevalent issue is the theft of mailed checks, which can be manipulated using chemicals to alter payees and amounts. To thwart such attempts, experts recommend using indelible black gel ink. This ink type is resistant to tampering and provides an added layer of security.

Avoid leaving your mail in the mailbox for extended periods. Pick it up daily to minimize the risk of theft. If you’re going out of town, arrange to have your mail held at the local post office until your return. You can also have a trusted neighbor, friend or family member collect any delivered mail or packages in your absence.

In addition, refrain from dropping letters into collection boxes after dark. Instead, take it directly to the post office for added security.

Cash is easy to steal making it an attractive target for thieves. If you must mail valuables, consider obtaining insurance coverage for added protection. If you have a security camera system, consider positioning one to monitor your mailbox area for added surveillance.

mail saving technology
Ring doorbell camera. CREDIT: WINK News

If you witness any unusual or suspicious behavior around mailboxes, quickly report it to the USPS or your local police department.

Earlier this year, the USPS unveiled plans to bolster security measures and combat mail theft. This includes deploying more secure collection boxes that are resistant to tampering, as well as replacing older key locks with electronic counterparts.

Ivanhoe Newswire contributed to this story.

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