Shipping and trade has become significantly more difficult since the year 2020, thanks to a perfect storm of outside factors. Items like PlayStations, cellphones, new electronics and collectibles have all become extremely hard to find and very expensive on the secondhand market. Also, health-related closures of businesses have driven most shopping to online storefronts, further taxing manufacturing and shipping to extreme levels.
These conditions have led to a complete squeeze on high-ticket items, especially those only sold online. As such, there is more interest than ever in a particularly nasty form of scam and theft: people simply stealing packages right off of your doorstep. If you’ve got packages coming in the mail, you need to be on the lookout for porch pirates.
So, how do you stop would-be thieves from making off with your packages? Your first instinct might be to install a doorbell camera, but this isn’t likely to deter thieves. After all, what good is video evidence of them taking the package if they’re already long-gone by the time you learn it was stolen?
One step you could take is requiring a signature for a package to be delivered. In the case of expensive orders, this ensures someone is present to collect the package and bring it inside, instead of the mail carrier simply dropping it off.
However, this requires that someone needs to be home in order to collect the package. If no one is going to be present when the mail arrives, this option wouldn’t work for you.
Some delivery services, like Amazon, have options that would allow you to authorize delivery people to key in to your home in order to drop the packages directly inside. These often use smart-home features to unlock the door, rather than the delivery person carrying an actual key to your home.
If you’re not looking to upgrade to a smart lock system, though, this also won’t work.
Another option would be to use a drop-off location to receive packages, instead of your front door. These come in a variety of options, with the most common being PO boxes at the post office. This system is the easiest for people who work hours that keep them away from home, as it allows their packages to be safely dropped off at a location where they can’t be stolen. Consider having your packages delivered to a PO box if you’re worried about thieves snatching them off of your porch.