Delivery services offer package solutions to reduce risk of ‘porch pirates’

MADISON, Wisconsin (WMTV) – The United States Postal Service has seen 1.2 billion more packages compared to last year. More parcels on the doorstep mean more opportunities for parcel thieves.

“It’s pretty sad that people feel like they have to resort to it to steal other people’s packages,” said Mike Barouh, a Madison resident. “I’m a little surprised because you wouldn’t expect it in this neighborhood.”

Barouh’s block has just been hit by “veranda pirates”; Thieves take treasures that don’t belong to them.

“It didn’t really stop me from ordering items online,” said Katie Bloomquist of Madison.

The thefts caused Katie Blomquist to plan incoming packages in advance.

“I’m more scrupulous about making sure we pick up the packages from the porch,” said Bloomquist.

The USPS (United States Postal Service) website provides additional ways to reduce the risk of package theft.

“The best you can do is be home when your mail gets delivered,” said Postal Inspector Spencer Block.

However, when they are away from home, Block says USPS customers can receive emails and text messages so they know exactly when a package is arriving.

“Signing up for informed deliveries and being careful of what is coming and going is always a smart thing to do,” Block said. “When you are not at home, you can keep your mail at the post office and collect it from there.

Whatever you do, neighbors and postal inspectors encourage everyone to be vigilant.

“I think we have to be careful and neighborly to make sure we stop people from doing these things,” said Bloomquist.

If someone steals a package from your doorstep, Block said the best thing to do is to report the theft to local police and postal inspection services.

It’s not just about the holidays, postal inspectors said these thefts happen year round, and they encourage everyone to always keep an eye on their mail and package deliveries.

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