Leah Panapa: Security in the era of online delivery

Opinion 05/07/2019

By Leah Panapa, Magic Talk Nights host.

When it comes to shopping I am a little bit old fashioned.

I like to browse through stores and try things on, feel the items and meet the people working there.

I still haven’t tried grocery shopping online, even though I bemoan every week how much of my time is wasted pushing a trolley around the store.

The reality is that more and more of us shoppers are purchasing our goods online.

Those that do, however are being warned to be vigilant.

There are growing numbers of customers around the country that are reporting items going missing from their front door steps and letterboxes by ‘porch bandits’.

In America, one out of five homeowners experience package theft and this number rises in holiday seasons.

While it might not be at that level here, yet, the thieves are cottoning on to how they can get their loot.

One courier driver said they believe a thief will follow the van.

They wait until the package has been left, then they shoot up the drive and grab it. 

Or they live in the neighbourhood and see which house gets a lot of visits from Courier companies.

With parcels being tracked now, it is easy to see where your purchase is.

However, if you have given the authority ‘to leave without signature’, then once it's on your property, the courier company is not liable for it going missing.

It's a double edged sword as far as I am concerned.

There is nothing more frustrating than coming home to see a ‘delivery note’ stuck in your door that means now you have to go pick it up from the depot or you let them leave it, and hope no sticky fingers low life takes it!

Last week I thought I had been victim of a ‘porch bandit’ after being told by the courier company in no uncertain terms that my parcel had been delivered and the driver had left it on the front door steps.

The woman on the phone said she had spoken with the driver and assured her he had left in on the front door step, one hundred percent!

After a bit of searching, I found it abandoned around the side of the house.

On the ground, in front of the security gate.

Sometimes its not a thief but a courier driver who likes to play a game of hide and seek with your packages?

There is options if you are concerned, try a lockable letterbox, redirect to your work if possible, and don’t allow any packages to be left without your signature.

Leah Panapa is host of Magic Talk Nights.