The Complete Guide to Keeping Your Packages Safe

Smartphone displaying live video of a delivery man holding packages.

Online shopping is booming, and package thieves are taking notice.


Retailers report a 76 percent increase in online sales during the COVID19 quarantine, and with those record sales come record numbers of deliveries.


For many of us living under shelter-in-place orders, home delivery is our lifeline to groceries, consumer goods, medicines, and more. Stopping package theft is more critical than ever.


This article will give you several tips for preventing package theft and help you learn how a  security system can help you keep watch on pesky porch pirates.


Track Your Packages and Get Updates

Millions of package thefts are reported each year, but dismally few cases are ever solved. That’s why experts urge prevention, and savvy shoppers know prevention starts with tracking your packages.


Your smartphone’s app store is loaded with apps that can track packages sent from multiple delivery services. Parcel – Delivery Tracking (iPhone, iPad) or Deliveries (Android) are highly rated for their ease of use. FedEx and UPS offer their own apps, but we prefer the convenience of a single app that can track packages from multiple sources.


Have Packages Delivered to your Workplace or Office

One of the best ways to combat package theft is to have items delivered to your office (with your company’s permission) or a friend’s house who will be home to receive the packages. This will stop porch pirates in their tracks. Of course, with the COVID-19 quarantine, many of us are working from home these days. In that case,upgrading your home with a video doorbell can suit your needs.


Require a Signature on Delivery

To prevent your package from being stolen, ask for signature delivery. Contact the sender and request a delivery confirmation signature. Most companies will add this service free of charge.


Use Local Package Lockers

Rite Aid and Walgreens locations offer locker service for Amazon purchases. It’s easy to keep your packages safe and secure with these self-service lockers. Customers also report that they love picking up packages when it’s convenient for them.


Pick Up Packages in Person

This suggestion may not be quite as convenient as receiving deliveries at your front door, but it’s sure to work. Contact your delivery service to hold packages at a local location so you can pick them up.


Your Security System Can Keep Your Packages Safe

Ensuring your packages arrive safely is one of the ways your security system works for you. Security cameras and video doorbells can notify you with an email when the package comes.


If you’re not home when the package is delivered, you can use your smartphone to disarm your alarm system and unlock the door so the package can be placed inside. Once the package is safely inside, arm your alarm system, again right from your smartphone. It’s that easy.

A young woman checks her smartphone to see video message that her delivery man has arrived with her packages.

What to Do if Your Package is Stolen

More than 26 million packages are stolen each year in the U.S., and less than 10 percent of cases are solved. If you discover you’re the victim of a porch pirate, take these steps to help remedy the situation.


As soon as you notice your package is missing, file a police report. While the odds are low that your package will be recovered, there’s always a chance. Plus, filing a police report is required if you’re going to make a claim against your homeowner’s or renter’s insurance. Beyond that, contacting the police will help them establish a pattern if porch thieves are prowling your neighborhood.


Within 24 hours of noting the package missing, contact the store and shipping service you used. Many online stores have policies for missing deliveries and may even send you a replacement at no cost. Keep track of order and delivery numbers to save time when contacting your retailer. This same advice applies if a friend or relative sent your package—keep them in the loop so they can report it to their retailer.


File a lost package claim:

  • Did you ship with the USPS? Click here to file a lost package claim.
  • Used UPS? Click here to file a lost package.
  • Was FedEx your delivery company? Click here to file a lost package claim.