Package thieves are coming to town: 7 tips to avoid thefts

The holidays are the season of giving, but for some, it’s also the season of taking.

Police say package thefts increase across the country each year during the holidays, and that’s just as true in Minnesota.

With more people getting gifts and other items delivered this time of year, thieves often see it as a great time to snag some valuables, especially when packages sit outside for several hours.

But it’s still possible to reduce the risk of having your packages stolen. Plymouth police and other agencies recommend the following steps:

  • Don’t have packages delivered unless you know someone will be home to accept them, that way they don’t sit outside, unguarded.
  • Have deliveries sent to a store, mailbox or locker for pickup, an option offered by UPS, FedEx and Amazon. If your employer allows, you can also have packages sent to your workplace.
  • Provide specific delivery instructions and sign up for notifications so that you can retrieve your package quickly after it’s delivered and require a signature for drop-offs.
  • Install a security camera where packages are typically delivered.
  • Look into using smart locks, which can allow keyless entry to a secure package drop-off area.
  • Reschedule deliveries or put them on hold while out of town.
  • Consider package insurance, just in case.

“Another good practice to prevent package theft and other crime is to connect with neighbors and keep an eye out for one another,” Plymouth Public Safety Education Specialist Sara Cwayna says. “When neighbors know each other, it’s easier to identify behavior that’s suspicious or out of the ordinary.”

Of course, anyone who sees someone take or try to take a package that isn’t theirs is always urged to call 911 immediately.