PROVIDENCE — As the holiday season approaches, the Rhode Island Police Chiefs’ Association would like to provide tips to prevent theft for members of the public who are expecting package deliveries in the coming weeks.
According to the National Neighborhood Watch, nearly one in four adults in the United States has reported having a package stolen at least once. RIPCA shares the following tips from the National Neighborhood Watch to help prevent package theft:
- Consider getting a P.O. box at your local post office or having packages delivered to your office
- Set up notifications to track your packages
- Install a security camera in the area(s) outside your home where packages may be delivered
- Require a signature upon delivery to ensure packages are never left unattended
- Reschedule delivery or ask for a package hold when on vacation
- Research potential home security technology and locking device options to protect and monitor packages
- Ask your neighbors to grab your packages for safekeeping until you return home
- Sign up for the United States Postal Service “Informed Delivery” service, where you can get a daily email with a picture/scan of the mail you will receive that day. To sign up, click here.
If you believe you have fallen victim to package theft, you should do the following:
- Confirm with your delivery company that your package was actually delivered
- Identify which package was stolen and what the contents of that package were
- Contact the police immediately and report your package as stolen
- If you have a security camera on your home, give a copy of the video to police
- Report the package theft to the applicable carrier:
Should you happen to witness package theft, do not approach the suspect. Instead, pay attention to what their vehicle looks like and its license plate number. If possible, get a physical description of the suspect to share with police.
Residents should note that around the holidays mail carriers such as Amazon and FedEx contract independent carriers to help deliver items during the peak season. These independent carriers typically drive their own vehicles that have no affiliation markers. Residents should be mindful of these individuals who are oftentimes mistaken as thieves when dropping off packages on behalf of carriers or delivery companies.