When you order something online and have it shipped to your house, there’s an inherent risk that the carrier might not be trustworthy. After all, anyone could be the one who gets your package — including a dishonest mailman or someone who steals it from your front porch. That’s why many e-commerce sites and shipping companies offer services like Amazon Key or other in-home deliveries. These programs give delivery drivers access to your home to drop off packages inside secure spaces like a locked entryway or storage closet. This can theoretically reduce the risk of theft or dangerous situations like having a stranger enter your home to leave a package on the doorstep. In practice, however, these programs have their own vulnerabilities — especially when you trust them so much that you might not even check if the delivery person actually brought what you ordered.
Does Amazon Cover Stolen Packages?
No, Amazon does not cover stolen packages. However, you can sign up for Amazon’s protection plan for additional coverage. Amazon’s Protection Plan provides additional protection for your eligible Amazon purchases if they are damaged or defective from the seller, or not delivered as promised.
How To Reduce Your Risk Of Stolen Packages?
Always sign for your packages
Whenever you have a package coming, you should always sign for it. If you refuse to sign for a package, the shipper may call the police; and if they can’t get an officer to the house, they’ll probably just return the package. We recommend always signing for your packages; that way, you can be sure they arrive safely. If you refuse to sign for a package and it gets stolen, you’ll be able to file a claim with insurance. If you’re not sure if the shipper will require a signature, you can always call and ask before the package arrives.
Use a lockbox
If your home is particularly easy to break into, a lockbox may be a good investment. If you know or suspect that your home is at high risk for package theft, this can be a great way to make sure your parcels stay safe. If you have a lock box and a package is expected, you can have it sent to the lockbox address. Thieves will almost always ignore a lock box; and if they don’t, it will take them a lot longer to get in. A lock box may not be a fail-proof solution to package theft, but it can be a helpful one.
Try a service that tracks your packages
If you’re worried about package theft, you may be able to reduce your risk by using a service that tracks your shipments. If you shop a lot online, you may already be using a service like FedEx or UPS My Choice. These services let you track your packages as they move through the sorting facility and towards your house. If you purchase a service like this, you’ll receive an alert when your package begins its journey, when it arrives at your local sorting facility, when it arrives at your local delivery truck, and when it arrives at your door. Most of these services are free, or at least very affordable; and if your package gets stolen, you may be able to file an insurance claim.
Pay for insurance
If you’re worried about package theft, you can reduce your risk by purchasing insurance for your packages. Many insurance providers will let you add an online purchase to your standard homeowner’s or renter’s policy for a small fee. This can be a great way to ensure you don’t lose a valuable purchase due to theft. If you have a really expensive or time-sensitive package coming, you may want to shop around for a policy that covers that package.
Hold your shipment until the last minute
If you can, hold off on ordering a package until the last minute. If you need a new TV by Sunday and it’s Tuesday, don’t order it online. If you hold off until Sunday, the shipper has fewer hours to work with and has a much higher chance of being robbed. If you absolutely can’t wait until Sunday, try to choose a shipper that offers guaranteed delivery services. FedEx, UPS, and the U.S. Postal Service (USPS) all offer guaranteed delivery services; so if you absolutely have to have a package by a specific date, you can choose a shipper that offers that.
Stop delivering to your mailbox
If your mailbox is easy to break into, you may want to stop receiving your mail there. You can request to have your mail delivered to a UPS or USPS location. (masconvention.org) If you do this, make sure you keep track of your new location! If you get a package and can’t remember where you need to pick it up, you could end up losing it. Finally, if you can, stop delivering your mail at all. You can sign up for paperless billing, which will eliminate most of the paper mail you receive.
What To Do If You Still Get A Stolen Package?
- If you do get a stolen package despite taking these precautions, it’s important to report it to Amazon so they can investigate. Since Amazon Key is a paid service, you may be able to get a refund for the stolen item or even have your Amazon Key subscription fee refunded.
- If the stolen package was something you purchased for resale or for a client, you can request a full or partial refund from the seller or manufacturer.
- If you used a credit card to purchase the stolen item, you can try to dispute the charge under the Fair Credit Billing Act if you can prove you were the victim of fraud.
- Finally, if you have homeowner’s or renter’s insurance, you may be able to file a claim for the stolen item. It’s important to check with your insurance company first to make sure stolen packages are covered.
How Does Amazon Key Work?
- After you’ve signed up for Amazon Key and installed the compatible smart lock, you can invite Amazon delivery personnel to your home by inviting them through the Amazon Key app.
- You have to have already verified that the person is an Amazon employee through the app, but Amazon Key can offer a lot of convenience for busy people who don’t want to miss out on Amazon’s speedy deliveries.
- Once you’ve invited an Amazon Key delivery person, they can unlock your door and use the Amazon Key app on their phone to secure a particular lockbox.
- Once they’ve closed the door, the app will let you know that your package has been delivered. You can also check to make sure that the correct package is in the correct lockbox.
Why Is Amazon Key So Popular?
- Amazon Key is a convenient service that can let you essentially have your packages delivered inside your home. However, it’s important to be aware of the risks and potential consequences of using Amazon Key, including the possibility of stolen packages.
- Amazon Key is most popular among Prime members who don’t want to go to the trouble of waiting for a package to be left on their doorstep. But with convenience comes risk, so it’s important to understand the potential downsides of Amazon Key.
- Amazon Key may be most popular now, but other services like Ring’s In-Home Delivery are set to capitalize on the same in-home delivery trend. It’s important to be aware of the potential risks and decide if Amazon Key is right for you.
Is Amazon Key Worth It?
- Amazon Key comes with a hefty price tag. The smart lock alone costs $229, and you’ll have to pay $19 a month for Amazon Key access.
- If you often have issues with deliveries or are worried about the safety of your packages, then the convenience and peace of mind offered by Amazon Key may be worth it.
- But if you’re satisfied with the status quo of regular Amazon deliveries, the additional cost and risk of Amazon Key may not be worth it to you.
The best way to protect yourself from package thieves is to check your orders as soon as they arrive. If someone other than you signed up for the package, you should definitely call the police. The worst thing you can do is leave a stolen package on your doorstep and invite the thief to steal from you again. If you have Amazon Key, take extra care to monitor your deliveries. While Amazon Key offers convenience for many Amazon customers, it also has the potential to put your security at risk.