Prevent Porch Theft this Holiday Season
Prevent Porch Theft this Holiday Season
During the holiday season, it is easy to forego the trip to the store and ship all of your holiday packages to your home. In fact, online sales represent 10% of all retail sales in the United States. Simply put, we have entered a new era where online shopping has become a commonplace practice.
That said, online shopping involves additional variables, especially when you consider the process of shipping purchases. When shipping your purchases to your doorstep or porch, you are inherently accepting the risk that your order may not be placed directly into your own hands. Perhaps it is because many packages are left on the doorsteps of homes, package theft has become a realistic concern for people, even in quiet neighborhoods and subdivisions. In fact, 30 percent of Americans have reported package theft directly from their porches.
So considering this real threat, what can you do to protect yourself from opportunistic thieves who are watching your porch? Here are five tips and strategies that you can rely on to decrease the odds of porch theft.
Five Ways To Decrease Porch Theft
First, we recommend that you leverage your delivery company. Whether you are purchasing goods from Amazon or through another online retailer, the company delivering your package will likely offer several tools that you can use to deter porch thieves.
The most obvious is package tracking. You will want to make sure that you track your package up to the moment that it reaches your porch. Some delivery companies even offer texts or emails alerts so you can be informed the moment your package is delivered.For pricier purchases, you may want to opt for insurance that is offered by your delivery company.
Finally, you may also be able to give specific instructions to the delivery company. If, for example, you would rather pick up your package at the delivery company’s facility, that is often an easy and secure option. You can also leverage options like an Amazon locker to ensure that you will receive your package at a particular location.
Beyond leveraging your delivery company, personal responsibility for your packages is the best way to ensure their safety. Leave packages on the porch for as little time as possible, whether that means being home for an important delivery or having a friend or family member present to accept the delivery. If possible, you may be able to rely on neighbors to ensure that your package is delivered. For example, if you know that you are going to be away the day that a package will be delivered, you can contact your neighbor so that they can watch your porch (or even receive the package until you return home). Another alternative is to rely on a network of neighbors to receive packages. By helping others when they’re away, they will likely return the favor when you are.
Third, you can rely on video surveillance to protect your packages. Quite obviously, the presence of a camera pointed toward your porch will cause some thieves to think twice before they take your package. Some surveillance cameras can even help you identify a thief after the fact, should he or she take a package from your porch.
Outdoor surveillance cameras offer a number of useful benefits for users, so when you’re shopping around, it’s important that you review the various features to find a camera that is most useful for your particular concerns. There may be some features that are more important to you than others. For instance, some surveillance camera systems allow you to remotely monitor a certain area (here, your porch) via your smartphone, so you can be sure that your package is on your porch before you return home.
Next, you can rely on your own observation skills and intuition to protect your packages. Simply put, if you see something or somebody that looks suspicious, you shouldn’t keep it to yourself. For example, if you see suspicious vehicles in your neighborhood or strangers going door-to-doo, you may want to consider taking those concerns to the police or local authorities, or at the very least, your neighbors, so they can keep an eye on the neighborhood with you. Talk to your neighbors about the importance of being observant. Working together, you can perhaps deter would-be perpetrators before they begin stealing packages off your neighborhood’s porches.
Finally, if you are a repeat victim of porch theft, you may want to track the thief using GPS. In effect, you can leave a “bait box” on your porch that contains a GPS tracker. Working with local police, you can ultimately track the bait box to its final destination, where the police can arrest the criminal. Some local police departments are conducting baiting programs to help minimize porch theft in their communities.
Porch theft is a frustrating thing, yet you can take certain steps to minimize the risk of it happening to you. Whether you choose one of the above steps (or all of them), you will be in a much better position than simply allowing packages to be delivered to your porch and hoping for the best.
At BrickHouse Security, we provide all the resources you need to ensure a safe home and a secure holiday season. If you have questions about home security monitoring and would like help choosing the best solution for your needs, we have got you covered. that’