Cash is untraceable and easy to steal, creating a nice payday for thieves. Send money another way, such as a USPS Money Order. If you decide to mail other valuables, make sure they are insured. You will be able to track it through the Postal Service and know when it arrives.
CAUSE A FIRE
If you send a toy or electronic as a gift, the batteries–especially lithium batteries–can cause a fire or explosion in the mail system. Taking them out and wrapping them separately before sending reduces the risk of fire hazard.
TURN A BLIND EYE
If you see something, say something, especially if it involves your mail carrier. Large volumes of mail and packages make postal employees tempting targets for thieves. If you see something suspicious or someone following your carrier, call the police immediately.
LET YOUR MAIL PILE UP
A visible pile of delivered mail and packages is an invitation to thieves. It serves as a signal that you are not at home and thieves may pillage your porch–or worse–the inside of your house. If you will be out of town or away for an extended period, use Hold Mail® ; or choose the HOLD FOR PICKUP option when shipping which allows the recipient to collect the package at their local Post Office upon their return.
Additionally, don’t leave anything in the mailbox overnight, as most mail thefts occur during nighttime.
IGNORE YOUR DOORS
If you are not watching and monitoring your doors, you can be sure the thieves are. When doors go unmonitored, it is easier for thieves to steal from the porch or attempt to enter your home. If you have a camera system, ensure it is aimed and focused on capturing activity at your front door or mailbox. If you catch mail thieves in the act of stealing U.S. Mail, save the video and contact the Inspection Service.
Use CUSTOMIZE DELIVERY. Visit USPS.com, enter the tracking number, and select USPS Delivery Instructions™ to authorize the carrier to leave the merchandise at a specific location at your residence, with a neighbor, or to your office.
Signing up for INFORMED DELIVERY lets you know what mail to expect.
Fraud is always a problem, but especially during the holidays when people are feeling extra generous or are shopping for a bargain. Scammers use bogus charities and underhanded tactics to fraudulently take money from you and away from legitimate charities. Before you donate, check out the charity and look carefully at the name– some phony charities have names closely resembling legitimate ones. Make sure to write your check payable to the organization and not to an individual. Do not ever feel pressured to give money on the spot.
Research any offers or deals that seem too good to be true (because they usually are). Read our article about pyramid schemes and the SECRET SISTER scam.
Scammers also send bogus delivery emails or texts trying to get your information. Don’t fall for it. Don’t click the link on any unsolicited emails or texts about package delivery attempts. Forward it to SPAM@uspis.gov and delete the email and/or text.
ALLOW CRIME TO GO UNREPORTED
Justice depends on you. When you do not report a mail theft, the thief gets away with their crime. Mail theft is serious, and reporting it is as easy as a phone call: 1-877-876-2455. You can also report crime by visiting uspis.gov/report.
Fireworks are an explosive and sending them through the mail is illegal. The sender as well as the receiver can both face arrest and federal penalties.