Here's what to do if your package gets stolen — and how to prevent it from happening

  • If your stolen package was delivered by a major postal carrier such as USPS, UPS, or FedEx, you should file a claim with the respective shipping company. 
  • If you know your package has been stolen, you could reach out to the sender or seller about a possible replacement or refund. 
  • You should also consider filing a police report for your stolen package to aid your case if you eventually file an insurance claim. 
  • Video doorbells like Ring and Arlo offer protection in deterring or catching theft. 
  • Visit Business Insider's Tech Reference library for more stories.

With so many people now working from home and the growing public awareness of porch pirates, you'd think package thieves would reconsider stealing an item from outside someone's front door. However, packages are stolen often from people's front steps and thieves are getting even more clever about how they're doing it.

It's a disturbing and frustrating trend, and if it's the first time you've had a package stolen, you might find yourself unsure of what to do next. However, there are steps you can take after your item is stolen to try to retrieve it or even get a replacement. 

What to do if your package gets stolen

Here's what you can do if you know your package has been stolen. 

Contact the delivery carrier

Most of the major delivery companies have dedicated systems in place to deal with stolen packages so your next best move is to contact them. FedEx, UPS, USPS, and Amazon all have claims sites where you can let them know what happened so they can try and assist you with getting back your package. 

File a police report 

Another option you have if you think your package was actually stolen is to file a police report with your local authorities. There likely won't be much they can do, especially if there are no witnesses, but if others in your area also report robberies, the police will have more to go on and will be more likely to catch the culprits. Additionally, a police report will help if you end up needing to file an insurance claim to be reimbursed for your stolen items.

Contact the sender for a possible refund or replacement

The next thing you should do is contact the sender of the packages. If it's a company, they may simply send a replacement following a report that their package was never delivered or went missing — especially large companies like Amazon. Others may not send a replacement but might reimburse you for the cost of the items. Make sure you keep your order number, tracking number, and any other relevant information in case they need it to help you.

Not every company can afford policies like this, but some might still try and help you, or make an exception, especially if you are able to provide them with evidence. If you have a video of the package being stolen, that's obviously helpful, but it could also help if you have a notice of the delivery to send in, so that the company can confirm that a package was actually delivered on their end.

Install a video doorbell as a precautionary measure

You don't have to booby trap your front porch to alert you to when interlopers are there, but video doorbells like the Ring or Arlo definitely make it much easier to deter and catch robbers through the devices' motion-detected video and microphone features. 

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