Protecting Your Parcels: 5 Strategies to Outsmart Package Thieves

November 8, 2023

The convenience of online shopping is undeniable, but it’s marred by the ever-present threat of package theft. With the upcoming holiday season, the rise in package deliveries—and consequently, package thefts—is alarming. A whopping 50 million packages more in 2022 than the prior year and 79% of Americans were victims of this previously covert crime. Now, delivery drivers are at risk of packages being stolen right out of their hands.

CNBC reports that UPS is deploying AI to police package theft as porch piracy incidences continue to surge year over year. It institutes “delivery confidence scores” to determine each location’s estimated safety on a scale of one to 1,000. Select small- to medium-sized merchants will test the web-based version starting in October 2023, just before peak holiday shopping (and shipping) season.

Furthermore, CNBC highlights that UPS is integrating artificial intelligence to counteract the surge in porch piracy and to optimize the security of package deliveries. This development underscores the severity of package theft and the escalating measures being implemented to combat it.

What can be done at your residence to safeguard parcels from opportunistic porch pirates? Below are five proactive measures to consider:

1. Opt for Alternative Delivery Addresses

Sending your packages to your workplace ensures that they’re received and signed for, eliminating the risk of them being left unattended. Alternatively, consider having your packages delivered to the homes of retired relatives or friends who are typically home during the day. This might involve some inconvenience but enhances the safety of your deliveries.

2. Leverage Carrier Tools

Carriers provide options like ‘signature on delivery,’ which ensures that your packages aren’t left unattended without your consent. If delivery attempts fail, the carrier will hold your package safely at their location. 

Also, establishing delivery text alerts allows for real-time updates on your package’s arrival, allowing you to arrange for a neighbor to receive it if you’re away. If that is not an option, seek a delivery window to plan your day around if possible. 

Eligible Amazon Prime members can receive garage delivery using their “key-in-garage delivery” service. And, USPS offers ‘recorded delivery’ creating an official delivery and posting record.

3. Hide Your Packages from View

If there are secure spots hidden from street view where carriers can leave your package, specify them in a clearly visible note (or in your shipping notes). Deliver lockers (or parcel pending smart lockers for apartment buildings) also aid in thwarting this crime. Although these methods carry some risks, they offer more convenience than retrieving your packages from multiple offsite locations. If your packages are out of sight, a package pirate is less likely to approach your home in the first place. 

4. Utilize Amazon Lockers or PO Boxes

If the above ideas are not viable options, Amazon Lockers serve as an alternative to home delivery. They’re secure, convenient, and typically located in larger cities. These lockers can also process returns. If unavailable, a PO Box is a practical alternative.

5. Invest in Video Surveillance Systems 

Installing a monitored surveillance system can significantly enhance package security. A remote access service like allows you to monitor your home in real-time from any web-enabled device. Don’t forget to keep your security signs well-placed and updated, as they can serve as additional visual deterrents to package thieves.

It’s a fact that the surge in package deliveries comes with increased risks but, by leveraging carrier tools, opting for secure delivery locations, and investing in surveillance, you can significantly minimize the chances of falling victim to porch pirates. Each additional security measure acts as a deterrent to potential thieves, reducing the likelihood of your packages being targeted. For inquiries on enhancing your home’s security or for more professional advice, feel free to contact us

Need new signs? Be sure your Per Mar Security Services signs are well-placed and current. They might act as a package theft deterrent! Contact us for additional signage.