The New York Department of State’s Division of Consumer Protection (DCP) is issuing important tips for consumers to safeguard against package thefts during the holiday season. Secretary of State Robert J. Rodriguez emphasized the need for caution following record levels of online and in-store shopping, as reported by the National Retail Federation.
The convenience of home deliveries, especially after events like Cyber Monday, has unfortunately led to an uptick in package thefts. Acting Superintendent of the New York State Police, Dominick Chiumento, also stressed the importance of being vigilant, suggesting consumers track their packages, schedule deliveries when someone is home, or seek assistance from neighbors, while also being observant of any suspicious activities in their neighborhoods.
In response to the heightened risk of package and identity thefts during the holidays, the DCP shared several preventive measures. These include tracking packages using real-time updates from delivery companies, scheduling deliveries for times when someone is home, and enlisting the help of neighbors if needed. Additionally, using security or doorbell cameras can help monitor front doors and quickly retrieve packages upon delivery. In cases of theft, the recorded footage can be valuable for police reports.
The DCP further recommends considering alternative delivery options, such as “ship to store” services, using package lockers or lockboxes, and opting for delivery confirmation signatures for high-value items. Consumers are also warned about phishing attempts that impersonate delivery companies or retailers. The Division of Consumer Protection, apart from offering mediation services, operates a Consumer Assistance Helpline and allows filing complaints through their website. The DCP regularly shares practical tips on its social media platforms and encourages consumers to stay informed and empowered on various topics, especially during the bustling holiday season.
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