How to prevent thieves from stealing packages this holiday season

ROCHESTER, N.Y. (WROC-TV) - As the holiday season approaches, package thefts have already been reported throughout Monroe County 

When it comes to online holiday shopping, clicking on the gifts you want right in your home seems so convenient, but this also creates more opportunities for thieves 

"If someone sees a package being delivered and they don't see anyone around they will go ahead and seize that opportunity," said Ogden Police Chief Christopher Mears.

Chief Mears said there are even organized groups who will follow around delivery trucks.

Regina Sachs said she has had packages stolen off her porch.

"It makes me upset that you actually come into my property and take my stuff," said Sachs, who now has cameras installed around her house. 

To avoid having your packages stolen, Chief Mears recommended having packages delivered to your work or a trusted neighbor who you know will be home. 

"My neighbor a couple weeks ago... she had some packages on her front step and I noticed them so I took them and put them by her back door," said Sachs. 

You can also sign up receive text or email alerts so that you know when your package has been delivered.

UPS has also come up with programs to help prevent this including the 'My Choice' app.

"It will give you a better time frame of when the delivery is going to happen," said Steven Retzlaff, a general manager at UPS. "It also allows you to redirect packages to anywhere you want."

Chief Mears warned that packages aren't the only thing thieves are after.

"Putting a check in your roadside mail box and putting a flag up is kind of an invitation to having your identity stolen," said Chief Mears. 

Chief Mears said it's best to put a check in a mailbox either at the post office or a blue postal pick up box

UPS also recommended making it a requirement that you have to sign for the package before it can be dropped off. 

If you see someone in your neighborhood that appears to be watching for packages or following along behind a delivery truck, call 911 immediately. 


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