Mail or Package Theft Prevention
General mail theft tips, from the United States Postal Inspection Service:
- Don't send cash in the mail.
- Deposit mail in a mail slot in the post office, at a Postal Service mailbox, or hand it to your letter carrier. Don't leave outgoing mail unattended in your mailbox for pick up.
- Pick up mail promptly. Don't leave it in your mailbox overnight. If you are expecting checks, credit cards or other valuable items, ask a friend or neighbor to pick up your mail.
- If you change your address, tell the Post Office and anyone else you do business with by mail.
- If you are going out of town, tell the Post Office and they can hold your mail until you return.
- Keep your mailbox in good repair and make sure it's properly installed.
- Consider getting a locking mailbox. Ask your local postmaster for the most up-to-date regulations on mailboxes.
Package thefts often increase between the months of October and January. Some package thieves follow delivery trucks and then take the packages after the delivery is made. Others are crimes of opportunity, when thieves see packages in plain view of the street.
Steps you can take:
- Track your shipment online.
- Choose a shipping option that requires you to sign for delivery.
- Arrange to ship the package to another location for someone else to receive. This can be a friend, relative, trusted neighborhood or landlord/apartment leasing office. Many local 'mailbox' businesses may agree to accept shipment of your item for a small fee.
- Ask the delivery service to hold the package for customer pick-up at their facility.
- A more expensive option is to buy a locking bin. This should be bolted down so the bin cannot be removed. You can then give the key code to the delivery company.