Putting the Brakes on Porch Pirates and Preventing Theft

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Do your best to put a halt to porch pirates this year.
Do your best to put a halt to porch pirates this year.

THUNDER BAY – LIVING – Ever waited patiently for an online order to arrive? That in itself can be frustrating. What is worse however is when that package gets delivered and then vanishes into the netherworld because a porch pirate nabbed it.

The Ontario Provincial Police (OPP) is highlighting this burgeoning concern affecting residents across Ontario— the theft of deliveries from home porches by opportunistic criminals commonly known as “porch pirates.”

As online shopping continues to surge, these incidents have become all too common, prompting the OPP to provide essential tips to help the community safeguard their parcels.

Understanding the Threat of Porch Pirates Porch pirates prey on unattended packages left at the front doors of homes, seizing the opportunity to commit theft in broad daylight. This issue not only leads to financial losses for consumers but also contributes to a sense of insecurity within our communities.

Proactive Measures to Secure Your Parcels To counter this, the OPP recommends several proactive steps:

  • Request a Signature on Delivery: This ensures your package is handed directly to you or someone you trust, significantly reducing the risk of theft.
  • Ship the Package to a Trusted Neighbour or Relative: Opt for delivery to someone who will be home, providing a secure way to receive your goods.
  • Workplace Deliveries: If permitted, having parcels delivered to your place of employment can offer a safer alternative.
  • Track Your Deliveries Online: Stay informed about your package’s delivery status to arrange to be home upon its arrival.
  • Opt for In-Store or Curbside Pickup: Many retailers offer the option to pick up your order at a store, eliminating the risk of porch theft altogether.
  • Install Video Cameras and Post Signage: Visible surveillance measures act as a strong deterrent to potential thieves.
  • Request Hidden Delivery Locations: Asking for your package to be placed at a less visible location at your residence can also prevent theft.

The Role of Technology in Deterrent and Protection The use of technology, such as tracking apps and home surveillance cameras, has become a crucial ally in the fight against porch pirates. These tools not only deter potential thieves but also provide valuable evidence should a theft occur.

Beyond Delivery: Alternative Pickup Options Exploring alternative delivery methods, such as secure locker pickups or arranging for in-store collection, presents additional ways to protect your purchases. These options often offer greater flexibility and peace of mind for consumers.

Of course you could simply shop locally, and eliminate porch pirates, however that isn’t likely to happen, the online world of shopping offers almost unlimited selection at prices that are hard to beat at times.

As we embrace the warmer months and the convenience of online shopping, adopting these strategies recommended by the OPP can significantly mitigate the risk of falling prey to porch pirates. Let’s work together to ensure the safety and security of our deliveries, making our communities a safer place for everyone.

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