Supply chain issues aren’t the only thing plaguing American shoppers when it comes to consumer FOMO. Package thieves have been adding anxiety to millions of residents.
According to a survey from SafeWise and Vivint, an estimated 260 million packages were lifted from U.S. porches in 2022. That alarming number is actually up by 50 million since last year.
The survey, which was published earlier this month, found that 79% of respondents have had at least one package stolen from their porch in the last year. Meanwhile, 40% of all packages stolen were valued between $50–$100, making an estimated loss of $19.5 billion.
During the holidays, porch thefts are going to be even more of a concern as people order their gifts online and have busier holiday schedules, according to one criminal justice and package theft expert.
"Package theft is a crime of opportunity. The more packages left for longer periods of time on a porch, the more likely they are to be stolen. As the Christmas gift season gets into full swing, there will be a significant increase in packages on a porch," Dr. Ben Stickle, criminal justice expert and member of the SafeWise advisory group said in the report.
"Add to that, people are busier this time of year and have their routine shifted as they may work later and spend more time away from home shopping or visiting with family and friends, so packages are left sitting exposed on the porch for longer," Dr. Stickle added.
Americans fear package theft more than other types of crime
More than 20,000 Americans noted they are far more concerned with package theft than other crimes, according to the survey.
This year, 53% of the respondents said package theft was their top concern as opposed to other crimes including property crime, violent crime and gun violence.
Gun violence was actually the lowest concern for the majority of respondents with 47% listing it as their top concern.
Package theft also occurred more than any of the other types of crimes asked about.
34% of respondents said they had experienced package theft while 27% said they experienced property crime. Only 15% said they experienced violent crime while 12% reported experiencing gun violence.
What to do if your package is stolen
In its report, SafeWise said that if someone does steal your package, you should file a police report, include any security footage you might have and contact the sender in case you can get a free replacement.
People can also file claims with the carrier who delivered the package. According to SafeWise, FedEx, UPS and the USPS all have ways that customers can file claims for stolen or damaged items.