You've scoured the internet for the best deals, ordered all the holiday gifts — but the most stressful part of it all may be yet to come: Ensuring you actually get your packages.
An estimated 11 million homeowners in the United States had a package stolen in the past year, according to a survey from smart home company, August.
Monday was the busiest shipping day of the year — which means plenty of holiday packages are already en route, waiting to be placed on porches, stoops, and doormats.
That means it's the most wonderful time of the year for porch pirates, those sneaky thieves waiting to swoop in and steal unattended packages shortly after they've been delivered.
Thankfully, there are a few tech tricks to help you keep track of your packages, whether it's for the remainder of this holiday season or year-round.
A Few Ways to Tell Thieves, 'Hands Off!'
The Package Guard is a $69 device that looks like a scale. The delivery person deposits your package on the device, triggering a notification to your phone that you have a delivery. If someone tries to snatch your gifts before you get home, the disc will trigger an alarm designed to scare the thief — or possibly even catch him or her red-handed.
August, the company that commissioned the study, makes a smart door bell cam that allows you to consult your smartphone to see who is at your door, even if you're not home. Currently available for $149, is ideal for knowing the moment your package is dropped on your porch, allowing you to rush home or ask a neighbor to grab it. Meanwhile, if thieves are tempted, they'll be caught on camera scooping up your package, allowing you to quickly alert authorities.
Doorman is an app that allows you to ship your packages to a nearby facility and then, for a small fee, schedule a time when you want them to be delivered. The downside? It's currently only available in Chicago, New York, and San Francisco.
Finally, Amazon also has lockers located near convenient places you may already go to on a regular basis, such as grocery or home improvement stores.
You can check to see if there's an Amazon locker in your area here, and in many cases, choose to have your item shipped to a secure locker, where you can pick it up at your convenience.
With customers receiving an average of 27 packages annually, according to August, these options will surely come in handy.