WENHAM — With online holiday shopping off to a strong start, Chief Thomas Perkins and the Wenham Police Department would like to encourage everyone to keep in mind a few safety tips to prevent falling victim to package theft.
A recent report indicates that online holiday shopping will rise nearly 15 percent this year.
“We know many residents have already begun online holiday shopping and we want to ensure that they protect themselves and their purchases,” Chief Perkins said. “At the same time, we commend residents who want to donate to charities to help those in need, but remind everyone to be careful with their personal information and to never give it out to those you do not know.”
To best ensure that residents’ packages are not taken and their personal information is not compromised, the Wenham Police Department recommends the following tips:
- Request notifications on your deliveries, via phone or email, to monitor your packages in transit and upon delivery.
- Always require a signature on your deliveries to ensure packages are never left unattended.
- Consider sending deliveries to an alternate location where someone will be able to receive them – whether that be a workplace, a neighbor or friend’s house, or a package delivery site location.
- Schedule your delivery for a specific date and time that you’re expected to be home.
- Set up a vacation hold if you plan on traveling during the holidays so gifts won’t be left on the doorstep.
- Be aware of “tailgating,” which refers to the people who follow delivery vehicles and steal the packages after they are dropped off.
- If you find your package has been stolen, call the police immediately.
- Never accept a surprise delivery where a payment is required, and never give out personal information when receiving a delivery that you purchased.
- For those who wish to distribute holiday cards to people like the mailman, waste and recycle personnel, contractors and servicemen, always personally hand out gifts. Never leave money or gift cards in an envelope, as they are at a risk of being stolen.
- Do not leave packages out in the open in your vehicle. Always lock your vehicle and store all the items out of sight. Bring in all items once you’ve arrived home — do not leave them in your car overnight.
The Wenham Police Department encourages residents who see something suspicious to immediately report it to police by calling the station at 978-468-4000. This will best ensure that all neighborhoods remain safe this holiday season.