It's peak season for burglars who are on the hunt for Christmas parcels left on doorsteps
Opportunistic burglars are on the prowl in the lead up to Christmas as UK homes are attacked by doorstep package thieves. With online Christmas shopping expected to be up by almost 12 per cent compared to last year, unsuspecting shoppers and homeowners have already been targeted with doorstep crime.
Recent video footage captured on a Ring Video Doorbell showed a package delivery driver openly stealing a parcel from a customer’s doorstep whilst dropping another off. The victim was made aware of the theft thanks to her Ring Video Doorbell and even managed to get her package back.
Commenting on the footage, Jamie Siminoff, Founder and Chief Inventor of Ring said: “An increasing number of people are falling victim to package theft; this is particularly an issue this time of year with homeowners expecting even more deliveries than usual. We need to address these issues by providing proactive solutions to monitor and protect properties, whether at home or not.”
With many online retailers now offering delivery right up to Christmas Eve, presents are at risk of theft with little to no time to replace them before the big day. When possible, shoppers should ensure someone is at home to receive the order or nominate another address for delivery. If being at home isn’t an option, connected home security devices can act as your second pair of eyes and ears.
To ensure homeowners’ Christmas presents are kept safe, here are five top tips to protect doorsteps from parcel thieves.
1. Reconsider your ‘safe place’ – Just because items are hidden behind a pot plant or wheelie bin doesn’t mean they’re completely invisible to burglars. Consider using a fixed outdoor storage locker where you can ask the postman to leave parcels, making sure it’s hidden from immediate sight.
2. Keep up appearances – If you are sending deliveries to an empty house when at work, make it look as though you are home by keeping lights on, use automatic timers or download an app which allows you to manually turn lights on and off via a smartphone from wherever you are.
3. Use smart technology – WiFi connected security devices, equipped with motion detectors, enable you to monitor your doorstep for deliveries and speak directly with the delivery driver about the safest place to leave your parcel.
4. Visible security – Visible security cameras are one of the strongest deterrents for burglars, who are less likely to risk stealing anything from your property if they think they’ll be identifiable and caught.
5. Work with your neighbours – Ask a close neighbour if they will be in during the day of delivery. When the package arrives, use your video doorbell to direct deliveries to a trusted home nearby.
Parcel thieves use the cover of darkness to hide in the shadows. It’s important this festive season for homeowners to be vigilant and protect their homes using the right security measures.