It’s no secret, porch piracy is a huge problem. According to a recent New York Times article, 1.7 million packages go missing every day. Simply put, this is a lot of packages!
Yes, there are many laws against porch piracy. However, despite these laws, only 10% of reported cases of porch piracy result in an arrest. In practice, these laws don’t stop most porch pirates. As it stands now, you are the best line of defense against porch pirates.
Don’t worry, you can use these 5 effective tips to protect packages from porch pirates this holiday season.
Tip #1 Use a Door Camera
One of the best lines of defense against would-be porch pirates is a door or doorbell camera. It’s true, having a motion sensor camera at your front door is a great way to deter package thieves. It is also the best way to help gather evidence for the police if a theft occurs.
If you do get a door cam to deter porch pirates, get one with a speaker. Even if a door cam does not stop a package thief, you can use the speaker on your door camera to tell a thief to “drop the package”. This is often more than enough to make a thief drop a package and run away. The best part is that you will have a great video to share with others.
Tip #2 Use a Lock Box
Using a fixed lockbox can be a great way to ward off porch pirates. A lockbox that is bolted to your porch, or solidly cemented in the ground is more than enough to deter even the most skilled porch pirates. There are many different styles of lockboxes, but the biggest challenge with the lockbox is ensuring that your mail carrier has access.
Fortunately, there are innovative companies such as BoxLock that have created a lock with a barcode scanner. This scanner will unlock the lock when the shipping label for the package is scanned.
Tip #3 Get a PO Box
This solution is nearly foolproof. Simply setting up a PO Box and picking up your mail from the local post office will assure you that your packages will not be stolen by porch pirates. Of course, it can be an inconvenience to have to go down to the post office. At least you can rest assured that your packages are safe.
Tip #4 Add Signature Delivery
If you are getting an expensive package delivered, consider requiring a signature. That way if you aren’t home when package delivery is attempted, the package will not be left unattended. The shipping service will make a few attempts to deliver the package. If you know you won’t be home you can also ask the shipper to hold the package at the local distribution center. Then you can pick up the package in person.
Tip #5 Deliver Packages To Work
This final tip works if you work from an office or another place that allows you to deliver personal packages. Simply have your packages shipped to you at work. Using your work address to accept packages will keep your packages from being susceptible to porch pirates in your neighborhood.
What’s The Bottom Line?
Despite laws against porch piracy, police departments simply don’t have the resources to keep up. This means it will take education and public awareness to solve the problem. Of all of your customers’ concerns about shipping, package theft is one you can help them solve.
Using these tips to protect packages from porch pirates can help you and your customers protect their purchases this holiday season. Most importantly, they can help your company avoid the headache of having to satisfy an upset customer whose package was stolen.
Douglas Dedrick is a writer who hates having his packages stolen and founder of Healing Law.