SAN ANTONIO — You are not alone if you have been hit by a porch pirate this holiday season. San Antonio ranks as the fifth worse city for package theft.
A driver delivering packages is a common sight during the holidays, but so is a porch pirate picking up a package. Seventy-five percent of Americans have a been a victim of this crime.
“And it’s likely that it could happen to you more than once, which is unusual, because you don’t usually get burglarized multiple times, but swiping something off a porch, there’s a lot of opportunity,” said Rebecca Edwards of Safewise.
“They just want something easy and quick,” said Glen Bhimani of BPS Security. “They’re not going to get caught, in their mind.”
Here are five ways you can prevent package predators:
Track your packages by opting in to shipping updates or using a tracking app.
“I use Shop app because I don’t have to use 500 different apps. I don’t have to track it in FedEx or USPS, UPS, Amazon. It’s all in one place and I can see how many delivery stops it is away,” Edwards said.
Add delivery instructions.
That can include how a driver can hide a package. Bhimani said, “If he knows if it’s something that looks expensive, he’ll put it other side of the house by the side gate where you can’t see anything from the street for us."
Bhimani also tells drivers to put small packages in an ice cooler he keeps outside.
“The number one way to not have a package stolen is to not have it seen by someone that wants to steal it, right?” said Edwards.
Amazon packages are the most stolen.
Use an Amazon shipping hub or this hack for other delivery services:
“You can ask for your deliveries to be held at the carrier’s, you know, little local hub or depot, and you could go in and pick it up,” Edwards said.
Ship to store. It is more inconvenient, but it is guaranteed not to disappear.
“Retailers, I think, require some sort of identification to get that package,” said Jason Meza of the Better Business Bureau. “But, again, it’s a sure way to avoid a porch pirate for sure. They’re not going to walk into a store.”
Require a signature.
“It’s the ultimate solution to making sure somebody gets it,” Meza said.
Whatever strategy you choose, make sure your packages cannot be easily seen from the street is the best prevention.
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