BEDFORD — As the holiday season approaches, more and more families are turning to the convenience of online shopping for presents. Chief Robert Bongiorno and the Bedford Police Department would like to remind residents of some best practices they can employ to ensure that the gifts they buy online will make it into the hands of loved ones, not thieves.
A recent report indicates that online holiday shopping rill rise nearly 15 percent this year, and a consumer survey indicates that a staggering 80 percent of Americans will scour Amazon for gifts this year.
“Whether you’re shopping with an app on your smartphone or on a computer, there is no doubting the appeal of online shopping for winter holiday gifts,” Chief Bongiorno said. “There are plenty of resources out there to ensure the safety of your presents, and I strongly encourage everyone to read and understand these vital tips.”
To best ensure that your packages are not stolen, the Bedford Police Department recommends the following strategies:
- Request notifications on your deliveries, via phone or email, to monitor your packages in transit and upon delivery.
- 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 FedEx or UPS 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.
Additionally, any suspicious person or vehicle should immediately be reported to the Bedford Police Department at 781-275-1212.
The men and women of the Bedford Police Department wish everyone a safe and healthy holiday season!