© 2024 WXPR
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00 0:00
Available On Air Stations

Simple Steps Can Discourage Porch Pirates

This year, a lot of your holiday shopping may be taking place on a computer.

With that might come an increase in the dreaded "porch pirates."

"With online purchasing about 30% higher overall this year than in previous years, that just means more packages being left outside," said Jim Temmer, president and CEO of the Better Business Bureau Wisconsin.

Experts say every year, the number of packages stolen from porches increases steadily. The good news is, there are several steps you can take to make sure your holiday gifts don't get stolen.

If you can, try to have someone at home available to receive the package. If that's not possible, try having it delivered somewhere else, like the home of a neighbor who will be available to receive it.

"Many employers allow packages to be delivered there and you can use your business address because you know someone will be there during business hours," Temmer said.

You could also give the delivery driver special instructions, such as requiring a signature for delivery.

"Maybe the delivery driver can put the package so it's not obvious on the front porch," said Officer Ben Price with the Wausau Police.

Doorbell cameras might help, but Temmer says they may not alert you with enough time to catch a thief in action.

"Those are great to try and identify somebody, but then it's too late because they've already stolen your stuff," he said.

While you're keeping an eye out for packages, keep an eye on your neighborhood too.

"If you see anything suspicious, don't hesitate to report it," Price said. "We definitely can do extra patrol of your neighborhood and your house to make sure everything looks fine."

If you fall victim of a porch pirate and don't have any camera footagte, police say having a specific timeframe of when the package was delivered can help in their investigation.

Up North Updates
* indicates required