Package Theft: 7 Ways To Prevent Your Parcels From Getting Stolen

The season of multiple gift giving may be over but the era of package thieves remains at a high. People who prey on unattended packages are always on the ready to pick your box off the front porch or the mailbox, so you must take proper measures to make sure this does not happen to you. Packages that sit for a long time (even just a few hours, while you’re out doing grocery shopping) are attractive not just to nosy neighbors and curious kids, but to thieves, as well.

How To Prevent Package Theft

According to Consumer Affairs, there are over 23 million complaints about stolen packages in every year — and that’s in the US alone. This number is at its highest during the holiday season, and after Cyber Monday or Black Friday, although reports of theft really happen all-year-round. Thieves don’t really choose an occasion to prey on unopened packages. As long as they see a box unattended, you can be somebody will be interested.

Despite this statistic, there are some things you can do so you don’t become part of this number. While you cannot really predict if and when you will be a victim of a thief, you can take some steps to reduce the likelihood that it will happen to you.

Here are seven things you can do to prevent package theft.

  1. Have your package delivered to your office, instead

You spend most of the day time at work, anyways, so why not just have your package delivered there so you can receive it yourself? There are just too many stories of packages getting snatch by curious passers-by or naughty neighbors from the porch. Also on a high are complaints about irresponsible delivery guys who just leave packages without even bothering to check if anybody’s home or, worse, pre-signing your delivery forms without asking you first. One way to avoid this is to have it delivered to your workplace or to the house of a friend you trust to ensure that you get your package intact and safe every time.

  1. Install a security camera on you porch or front door

A camera might not stop thieves from getting at your package, but having one that is visible will deter them from attempting anything. A video cam facing your hallway, driveway or front door is a great deterrent and people will have to think twice before trying to get near. There are security cams that you can access in real time via your smartphone and provide high definition quality videos so you can see things clearly even in dim light conditions, like gloomy weather or dusk. Security experts recommend that you get an HD surveillance camera that has a minimum of 1080p so you can make a clear and positive ID when your package does still get stolen.

  1. Use Amazon locker or other smart package lockers

When you know nobody’s going to be home, you can have your packages delivered to smart lockers at select locations across the US. You will be given a unique code to punch into the system so it churns out your package. Not all states have this, though, so best to check first if you have a smart locker near you or are willing to drive a bit to retrieve it. Smart lockers are a convenient and guaranteed safe way to receive packages. The UPS Store also lets you buy or rent digital lockers that you can also share with friends if you are frequent online shoppers.

  1. Put your deliveries on hold

When you know you’re going to be away for a week, you can call the courier service or post office to tell them to place a “hold” on your packages until you call them again or for a pre-set period. Delivery services like FedEx or USPS have this service for free. Some couriers charge a minimal fee for keeping your package at their warehouses for a while. Do check with your service provider first about their fees and guidelines. If they do charge, this amount will be nothing compared to the hassle of having your stuff stolen from your yard just because nobody could receive it.

  1. Get insurance

You don’t want to come home after a fun holiday to find out that your packages have been stolen or have gone missing. One way to make sure that your precious parcel is protected is by getting insurance. Courier services will guarantee reimbursement on the declared value of your package in the event that it gets looted or it gets lost along the way. Check with your service provider about their terms and conditions first.

  1. Require a signature upon delivery

There have been plenty of reports about delivery personnel pre-signing your packages and then just leaving them on your front door, ripe for everyone’s picking. To prevent this from happening, you can ask for signature delivery. UPS has this service, where you can ask your sender to require a delivery confirmation signature before the package can be released as “delivered.” If you asked for this service and it was not followed, the courier company can be held liable legally and you will be given a full refund if no proof of delivery is presented.

  1. Reschedule delivery

If you don’t know when exactly you’ll be returning from your vacation or work trip, you can monitor your shipment using the tracking number and call the courier service to reroute the parcel to another address. This can be a trusted friend or family member’s house where you are sure that somebody will guarantee a delivery first-hand. On the other hand, you can also ask that the delivery company reschedule the actual drop-off. Both services might come with a fee but, again, this amount will be minimal compared to the trouble of tracking your missing package after a relaxing holiday.

Whether it’s the holiday season or a regular day, nobody really is immune to package theft when there’s a parcel just sitting at your porch and not getting any attention. You can outsmart would-be thieves and give yourself peace of mind while you’re away by following any of these seven tips. By being smart about your parcels, you can then go back to shopping and receiving packages confidently and without fear that the nosy neighbor would tinker with it or it gets stolen.

8 Important Home Security Tips For New Parents

One of the most exciting times for new parents is finally getting to bring the little one home for the first time. However, before you introduce your little bundle of joy to his or her new house, you have to make sure all areas are babyproofed. Infants might not have access to your home just yet, but as your child grows and becomes more explorative of the surroundings, you have to ensure that the environment is safe.

Many recorded home accidents involving babies are related to unsafe spaces. Because babies are a naturally curious lot, you can’t always assume that every part of your house is ready for them just because you don’t see any edges. Even if you have your eye on your little one all the time, there will be moments when they could slip from your fingers and go wandering off on their own. It only takes seconds for an accident to happen, so it’s your duty as parent to baby-proof his or her surroundings.

Here are eight tips that will help you ensure a safe environment for your child.

  1. Get rid of the clutter

When babies start learning to walk and explore, they won’t be mindful of the things that might get in their way. If you have low-lying ornaments, wires, unbacked area rugs, and anything else that might cause them to trip and fall over, it’s time to clear the floor and keep the home clean. By getting rid of the clutter, you reduce the risk of your baby hurting himself or herself. So the next time your child does manage to get some “me” time, you can feel safer.

  1. Make sure all electrical sockets are covered

There’s no stopping a curious baby when he or she wants to inspect something — and that includes electrical sockets. With their tiny fingers, they can easily get shocked the moment they pick on an open outlet. And because sockets are closer to the floor, they are dangerously within the level that your child can reach, making them an even bigger threat. Thus, before the baby comes, place guards or covers over the sockets to make sure there’s nothing to poke into. You can purchase these at the local hardware shops and are easy to install.

  1. Childproof tables and cabinets

There are cabinets in the home that contain potentially hazardous items, like those under the kitchen sink that hold cleaning materials. Some contents aren’t necessarily dangerous but could fall on your child if the doors are opened. To prevent injury, you should place locks or door jams on your cabinets and other things that open so your baby can’t get access to places they shouldn’t reach.

Tables and other furniture with edges can also present a risk for injury. What you can do is place rubber or silicone covers over the sharp corners to reduce the impact in case your baby does bump into it. You can purchase these at baby shops or at the local hardware.

  1. Have safety gates installed

The moment your child learns to crawl or walk, he or she will be wanting to go all over the house. You can protect your little one from restricted areas like the kitchen, the stairs leading to the second floor, and the exits, by installing a safety gate where needed. This way, your child won’t be exploring any room he or she is not supposed to enter or, heaven forbid, try to climb or go down the stairs at that split second you’re not watching.

  1. Place blocks or barriers on showers, toilets, pools

Places where there’s standing water, even the shallow ones, are a drowning risk for little kids. Install magnetic locks on toilet seats or barriers to the bathroom to prevent wandering babies from accidentally accessing them. Even if you think it’s just a very small amount of water, it could still pose a deadly hazard for babies.

  1. Use baby monitors

Of course, it’s impossible for parents to keep an eye on their children day and night. Baby monitors are excellent at helping you check on your child even when you’re not physically in front of him or her. This device will be your eyes and ears while the baby sleeps or plays while you go do some household chores.

  1. Consider going wireless

Wires are a threat to your child. They can get all tangled up in them or even choke. You need to make sure that all wires to your electrical devices are tucked safely out of reach. Otherwise, you might want to go wireless for your entire home to prevent any injuries of this sort.

  1. Install security cameras

Like baby monitors, video cameras are your extra sets of eyes on your little one while you go do something else. While it is not a substitute for your or a sitter’s attention, it is inevitable that you step away from the baby for a while to perform chores, go to the bathroom, and more. They are especially helpful when the baby’s resting, so you can safely bustle about without worrying if the baby’s awake and is on the verge of getting hurt.

In addition, a security camera can also serve as a means of protection for your entire family in case something untoward happens. Position it not just at the nursery but also at strategic locations in and around the house so you and your family will have peace of mind.

Overall, childproofing your home is essential to making sure that your new bundle of joy stays happy and safe as he or she grows into an explorative little child. Any area that poses a potential threat to your little one should be either closed, blocked, or removed. If you’re still unsure which parts of your house are possible hazards, you can hire a security expert to give your house a full assessment so he or she can point out specific spots that need reinforcement or blocking.

Travel Safety Tip: 5 Ways To Keep Your Valuables Safe When Jetsetting

Going on a vacation is fun; but all the excitement and preparation will be for naught if you lose some precious items along the way. With all the hotel transfers, plane hopping, and traveling that comes with enjoying a new place comes the greater responsibility you must over your belongings.

It’s very easy to lose stuff, either by accidentally forgeting about them or being robbed, when your mind is distracted by all the nice experiences around. That alone could ruin your entire vacation. So, how do you make sure that all your valuables are safe when you’re out and about?

Many travel experts advise that you should not bring anything valuable when you travel, at least nothing you’re not okay with losing. That means taking less jewelry (or none at all, if that can be helped), fewer gadgets, and toning down on the contents your luggage. This is excellent advice. But when you are in a situation where you will need to bring a laptop, antiques to sell, important documents and contracts, gifts, or other expensive items, you need to be extra on-guard.

Here are 5 ways to ensure that your valuables stay intact even as you keep hopping from one city to another.

  1. Don’t pack your valuables. Carry them with you.

The best way to ensure that your important items are safe and sound is to keep an eye on them at all times. That means carrying them with you in your bag instead of placing them inside your luggage. Especially if you’re carrying fragile items or collectibles, it’s always smartest to include them in your carry-on. If it’s a breakable piece that requires a customized case, don’t check it in. Instead, just slip it under your seat or secure them between your feet in the plane, bus, or train.

The smaller valuables like credit cards, your travel documents and your cash should be close to your body where they can be accessed easily. However, do keep them in special pockets that keep them hidden. This is where a money belt or a body bag comes in handy. So in case you doze off, you can feel safe knowing that they are just on your person throughout the trip.

  1. Lock your checked bags

When you really have no choice but to check your valuables in with the rest of your luggage, make sure that the bags are locked and difficult to open. A TSA-approved bag will give you more peace of mind than a regular lock and key system that can be easily picked or dislodged. You can also use a coded lock so only you can access the contents.

While placing your items with your checked bags is not the safest way to travel, locks reduce the risk of theft. There still have been plenty of reports on missing gadgets, cash, medicines and jewelry from checked luggage so this is not 100 percent effective. But if it really can’t be helped, locks make a pretty good deterrent against someone who is out to target travelers’ bags.

  1. Mail your stuff, instead.

If you are not confident about the security of your things during travel, you can opt to mail them to yourself instead. Place them in a box and have them shipped to your destination, so you don’t have to worry about them throughout the trip. On your way back, you can do the same. Of course, transact only with a reputable courier service. Aside from the promise of safely bringing your items to your preferred address, most couriers also offer insurance for valuables.

The main point in shipping your stuff is sparing yourself from the effort of lugging things around and keeping close watch over them throughout the journey. You can also instruct the delivery service to release the item only to you or to a person you trust. Another advantage of direct mail is getting a guaranteed arrival date and schedule.

  1. Invest in locks to secure your bags to luggage racks

Traveling by bus or train often means leaving your luggage at a designated space, mostly because of the narrow legroom. While some trains have overhead storage areas, you can’t always be too sure with all vehicles. One way to secure your bag in case you get distracted or fall asleep during the ride is to get a bike or luggage lock.

When would-be thieves see that your bag is locked to your seat, to the bar, or to the racks, there is a slimmer chance of it being snatched away. Be careful to lock your items inside in the case first, and then loop the cable around the handles and through your lock again for maximum safety.

  1. Get travel insurance before you leave

Travel insurance is a smart and practical way of making sure your stuff is covered during the trip. This usually works for the general items, but might not be favorable to you if you lose expensive things, like family heirlooms, jewelry and antiques. Insurance covers most items but place a ceiling amount on individual pieces that may be way lower than your stuff’s actual value. For example, while your grandmother’s wedding ring might actually be worth $2,000, insurance firms might have a policy of placing $1,000 cap on jewelry thefts. Some insurance firms will even ask you to present an original receipt for your item (but who keeps those around, right?). This could be problematic.

Regardless, this is still something that you should take against your valuables before you head off. Travel insurance can involve tedious paperwork and appraisals, but that’s better than not getting coverage at all. When it does happen that your valuables get stolen during the trip, surely you’ll still be glad that insurance covers a fraction of its value.

Overall, while you cannot really fully protect your valuables during travel, these tricks will help significantly reduce the likelihood that they will get lost, misplaced, or stolen. When it comes to moving around with important and expensive stuff, it pays to prepare and be proactive.

Lost Something? Here’s What You Can Do To Get It Back

Do you know what to do when you lose something (or have it stolen)? In our state of panic or disappointment, we tend to forget the things that we should immediately do the moment we find out something is missing. We at Security Info know that losing an item is frustrating. You could have already had an awesome day but, instead, find yourself wasting time and energy looking. To avoid this inconvenience in the future, our team has gathered some tips in finding and safekeeping some of the most common items lost — so you can immediately go back to enjoying your day.

Nobody is immune to losing a valuable item. At some point in one’s life, you will experience what it feels like to be in this situation. However, that’s not enough reason to just do nothing and accept that it can happen to you. If you really want to prevent losing something important, there are many preventive steps you can take to ensure that you are protected. Have you ever been in that situation where your heart sank after realizing you left your phone or wallet in a cab? This guide will very helpful.


How To Avoid Losing Your Things In The First Place

An ounce of prevention is better than a pound of cure, as the saying goes. The same certainly goes for stolen or missing items. While we may not be able to stop a thief from targeting us or prevent ourselves from forgetting something, there are some steps we can take to ensure that the odds of us becoming a victim are lower. Fortunately, these steps don’t cost anything. All you need is presence of mind and a little extra awareness.


– Safeguard your things and don’t leave them unattended

You might be tempted to leave your phone or laptop on the table at the coffeeshop while you go to the restroom. It’s just going to be a few minutes, right? And it’s in broad daylight. The truth is, it takes mere seconds for somebody to swoop in and take your exposed items. It may feel like such a chore to pack up and unpack every time you leave the table, but that’s so much easier than having to deal with the stress of getting your stuff stolen.


– Quash absentmindedness by being consistent

Always follow a routine or a system when you leave the house or go anywhere. Always put your house keys, cellphone and other valuables in the same place every time. This way, you never have to rummage through your bag or wonder if you dropped something because you know that there’s only one place where you always leave your stuff.


– Set up a message on your phone’s lock screen.

If you have that habit of leaving your phone and forgetting about it, you can increase your chances of it returning to you by composing an “if found” message on your screen. Not everything that’s left gets stolen, so you have to give the finder an opportunity to give it back to you. Doing this will make it easy for him or her to contact you.


– Memory tricks are helpful.

Psychologists and even those who practice memory recovery tactics can attest that there are certain exercises you can perform to stimulate your brain into remembering important details. Visualizing and picturing yourself at your last location and tracing your steps back in your head will help you locate it eventually. Another trick that experts swear by is creating an association between your item and the environment. This will help embed your item and it’s location in your otherwise preoccupied brain, thus increasing the odds of you finding it easily.


– Use technology.

There are plenty of anti-theft and anti-loss devices and apps that you can use to make sure your things don’t get lost. You can use a dedicated laptop lock, for instance, or an anti-theft bag (which is perfect if you always commute). Another method is to tag your item with a discreet tracking device that you can link with your phone or computer so you can locate wherever it is and track it down.


Can’t Find Your Keys?

Keys are one of the most common items that get misplaced or left somewhere. It almost always happens when we are in a hurry or are distracted by another event, so realizing that you lost them aggravates an already slightly panicked state. To prevent you from running around like headless chicken, these are steps you should follow.

Calm down and stop. The moment you discover that your keys are not in the place you expected them to be, stand still and do nothing. Breathe, take the time to gather your thoughts, and then slowly try to remember where you last left them or went. The calmer you are, the greater the chances of recovering your keys by memory.

Retrace your steps. When was the last time you had your keys in your hand? Visualize that situation in your head. When you’ve identified it, go to that place.

Don’t rule out strange places. There’s no real explanation but, for some reason, keys tend to end up in odd places. After you’ve gone through the usual spots, start checking out weird locations like the fridge, between sofa cushions, or sinks. Don’t rush and panic once again. By going through each space thoroughly, you save yourself from having to check the same place many times.

Always have a backup. If you’re the type who always misplaces things, just accept that fact but don’t get defeated by it. Hand out spare keys to trusted family members and friends, so that the next time you lose them, you have someone to call. If you don’t have a spare and still can’t locate your lost key, call a professional locksmith to help you out. You can change your locks as a last resort. If you lost your car keys, get in touch with your dealer for help.

Overall, nobody likes to suffer the stress of having something valuable lost or stolen. The good thing is that there are plenty of ways and resources available to help ensure that they come back to you. Employ memory techniques or be more sure about finding stuff by installing the right technology that will help you track and monitor your stuff’s whereabouts at all times.