El Diaz, from Rialto, California, watched the packages his father ordered removed minutes after they were delivered. This porch pirate walked away with gifts worth over $1,000 in seconds. A pair of pajamas he had bought for his dog and himself, as well as three Movado watches, said to be worth a combined $1,000, were stolen from his porch in plain sight.
Thanks to our online shopping and delivery services, holiday shopping has never been easier.
Instead of dealing with the hustle and bustle of malls and department stores, people can now do all their holiday shopping at a click away from the comfort of their homes.
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Unfortunately, gifts don’t always reach their intended recipients, as across the country, packages continue to mysteriously disappear from doorsteps and patios.
No, it’s not the demonic Grinch trying to steal Christmas, but rather what have come to be known as the “porch pirates.”
Nearly 290 million packages were stolen from porches in 2021.
According to a recent study by the research firm Safewise, 260 million packages, worth a total of $19.5 billion in value, have already been stolen from porches across the country in the past 12 months.
This is a statistic that will no doubt grow as the holiday season approaches.
Texas police are urging residents to be on the lookout for the “Porsche Pirates” this holiday season
Armed and dangerous
Things got even scarier Antioch, TennesseeThree hackers are spotted from a balcony following a FedEx delivery truck and stealing packages being delivered.
Moreover, these men were spotted carrying loaded guns.
Fortunately, after the black Dodge Charger they were driving was reported, the three perpetrators were caught, arrested and charged.
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The police are on the lookout.
As reports of stolen packages continue to mount, local authorities are doing everything they can to monitor porch pirates.
Police Department Van Alsteen, Texas Until they came up with a surefire way to ensure packages reach their intended recipients this holiday season.
By allowing residents to hand in their parcels to the police station.
With the station open 24 hours a day, seven days a week, Van Alstyne residents are allowed to come in at any time to pick up their gifts, needing only to show a valid ID.
If your local police department doesn’t offer this service, or if you’d rather not make the trip to the police station to pick up your gifts, fear not.
As previously reported in a story on CyberGuy.com, there are 8 simple ways to avoid becoming a victim of local porch hackers.
The best ways to avoid pirate package theft
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Invest in a video doorbell
A video doorbell installation, like WYZE’s, will probably stop porch hackers dead in their tracks.
Even if it doesn’t stop them from stealing, you’ll still get an alert that someone has approached your front porch door, whether they rang the doorbell or not, and caught up with them in the act, with their face fully visible.
You could even go a step further and install cameras on trees around your driveway, and maybe even get a clear shot of your license plate. While this won’t guarantee you recovery of stolen goods, it will greatly assist local police in tracking down the perpetrators.
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Choose the delivery date
Most online retailers allow you to schedule delivery, giving you a day and a half of time when your package arrives. This allows you to be ready and waiting for her to arrive and stash your gifts safely away behind closed doors.
Amazon, UPS, and FedEx can also alert you if you receive a delivery.
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Get to know our delivery drivers
The next time you see your mail carrier come to your house, introduce yourself, and maybe ask if he can put your packages somewhere less visible than your front porch.
Porch hackers grab beams from front porches, except for beams, as they are easy to grab and even easily escape from. Placing your packages at the back door or some other hidden location is bound to keep them more secure.
In select regions, Amazon offers a service known as Amazon Key, where when you purchase a smart garage console like myQ, Amazon delivery drivers can leave your packages securely in your garage.
Rest assured, drivers are only allowed access to your garage for one-time deliveries.
Another way to make sure your packages will be safely waiting for you when you get home is to invest in secure delivery boxes, such as The Elephantrunk Parcel Drop.
Deliverables are placed at the top of the box, then lowered into a locked room that can only be accessed by the owner.
The bumper cushions plus the water-repellent coating ensure your items are safe from thieves and the elements alike.
Of course, if you’d rather not invest in your own lock box, and don’t mind making the trip, you can always have your packages delivered to an Amazon locker.
Once your package arrives, you will receive a notification and delivery.
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Keep an eye out for pirates in the neighborhood
By subscribing to a live monitoring app like Neighbors or Nextdoor, you can track any stolen packages in your neighborhood, as users also post any photos of porch hackers they may have taken on their doorbell cameras.
One thing to keep in mind if you happen to find a pirate on the porch stealing a package, try to avoid “being the hero”.
As much as we want to jump into action and stop them, one never knows how dangerous these porch hackers can be, so it’s best to call the police or notify another neighbor before taking matters into your own hands.
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