It’s the season of giving … and taking. The holidays are a cheerful time, but while you’re celebrating, someone may be eyeing those perfectly wrapped presents. Several police departments have reported an increase in stolen packages in Massachusetts. Here at H. Levenbaum, we want the holidays to remain a happy time — that’s why we’re offering tips to help prevent theft this season.
- Lock yourself out. This may sound like an odd thing to do, but if you can find a way into your home without a key, so can a thief. (Just make sure you actually have your key to allow yourself back in).
- Secure your home. Every time you leave your home, even if it’s just to ask your neighbor to borrow a cup of sugar, make sure to lock up. Keep in mind that your front door isn’t the only entrance to your home. Make sure windows are locked and secure, along with any other entranceways, like back or patio doors.
- Don’t update your status. 4 out of 5 burglars use social media to find their targets. Experts suggest not oversharing on social media. This includes sharing your travel plans and gifts or recent purchases. It’s best to leave this information off of your social channels because it can be used to alert criminals of when you won’t be home and of what exactly you might have to offer in your home.
- Customize package deliveries. If you’re doing your holiday shopping online, you may want to take steps to protect your deliveries. It might be possible to customize delivery times and locations. For example, you may be able to have packages delivered after you return home from work, or ask for them to be left at your back door, rather than in plain sight. You can also choose for your packages to be held at a carrier’s location, so you can schedule to pick them up at your own convenience.
- Dispose of garbage wisely. This includes purchase receipts or the boxes themselves. Both of these things seem meaningless, but to a criminal, they contain useful information. A giant flat-screen tv box on the side of the curb signals that you have a brand new TV in your living room and a mile long store receipt indicates exactly what you purchased from the store. Make sure to break down boxes and dispose of them discretely. If you choose to keep records of your purchases, do not leave receipts in your wallet in case it is lost or stolen.
Keep thieves from souring your holiday cheer this year by taking the steps to prevent theft. Everyone at H. Levenbaum wishes you and your family a safe and happy holiday! For more information about theft prevention and holiday safety, contact an H. Levenbaum agent at 617-825-3900.