GLEN ROCK, NJ - With the convenience of online shopping, most people have already begun their holiday shopping and have certainly welcomed the uptick in packages arriving at the door, something local police are well aware.

The U.S. Department of Commerce estimates consumers spent $513.61 billion online in 2018, up 14.2% from 2017. 

"With this trend has come a new type of thief commonly referred to as a “porch pirate” – criminals who steal packages left in front of people’s homes by delivery services," Glen Rock Police Chief Dean Ackermann said in the weekly police blotter. "As the holiday season begins, we can expect a rise in these types of crimes." 

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Chief Ackermann recommends the following package theft prevention tips:

  • Have packages delivered to your work or to an alternate address where someone is home during the day. 
  • Schedule delivery for times you will be home.
  • Require a signature from your package carrier.
  • Monitor your front porch (Xfinity Home, Ring doorbell, Nest and others).
  • Try a lockbox. Lockboxes can be used to protect packages until you can make it home and retrieve them. 

Usually in the email order confirmation, the vendor gives their patrons link to track the package, but in case those are not handy, try these mail carriers who allow shipment tracking online:  

  • FedEx: http://www.fedex.com/ca_english/track/   
  • UPS: https://www.ups.com/WebTracking?%20loc=en_US&WT.svl=PriNav/       
  • USPS: https://tools.usps.com/go/TrackConfirmAction  
  • DHL: http://www.dhl.com/en/express/tracking.html
  • Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/gp/help/customer/display.html?nodeId=201910530