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Police warn of thefts by North Vancouver porch pirates

Thieves are also getting a jump on Christmas shopping this year
Package delivery
The North Vancouver RCMP is warning the public about an increase in the number of package thefts. Jennifer J Taylor/Getty Images photo

Turns out online shoppers on the North Shore aren’t the only ones getting a jump on the holiday season.

The North Vancouver RCMP is warning porch pirates have also been out early.

"We are seeing an increase in mail and package thefts earlier than expected this year," said Const. Kelly McIntyre, spokeswoman for the North Vancouver RCMP.

McIntyre said in some cases thieves will case a neighbourhood, checking to see if there appear to be any packages left at front doors. At other times, suspects will follow people into the lobby of an apartment building, and head to the area where packages are usually dropped off in order to pilfer them, said McIntyre. “They’ll slip in when people aren’t paying attention.”

Police say there are steps residents can take to help keep their deliveries safe.

Among them:

  • Talk to your neighbours about package thefts and look out for one another.
  • Install a motion activated spotlight.
  • Post a warning sign that the premises is under surveillance.
  • Install a parcel box – which allows drop offs but requires a key to open - near your door.
  • Install a front-door security camera or video doorbell.
  • Keep your front porch clear and well lit.
  • If you live in a building, do not let strangers in via intercom, by holding the door open for them or by giving them access to different floors.

While ordering items online, consider:

  • Requesting that the box be nondescript.
  • Sending packages to a secure location.
  • Requiring a signature.
  • Providing delivery instructions to leave the package in a specific location so it is out of sight.
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