Is your home as safe as it used to be? Hard to say — especially if you’re a new homeowner or renter in the area — but nationally, the answer is probably. According to data collected by the FBI and Bureau of Justice Statistics, over the last quarter-century property crimes have fallen between roughly half and two-thirds. One particular kind of theft, however, has exploded.
Package theft from porches has risen as the number of packages left on porches has surged. The total volume of packages the United States Postal Service ships has doubled in just ten years — this as the amount of traditional “mail” in America has dropped by nearly half.
December serves as a stark reminder of how many valuables land on our porches, as gifts from us and for us arrive. These wishlist items, picked and shipped on the backbone of that reliable and high-speed Kinetic Internet connection, are collectively inviting curiosity from petty thieves. It’s become so regular there’s a well-populated term for package thieves — “porch pirates.”
Without tracking devices or surveillance, these packages are vulnerable. Would it surprise you to learn that your Kinetic Internet connection can speed along protection, too?
Eyes on the prizes
Just as internet retail has brought more valuables to our stoops, it has precipitated the development of next-generation home security, inside and out.
Today’s video doorbells are light years away from home security of old.
- Battery-powered smart cameras are WiFi-enabled and operable by a smartphone app
- Some feature passive infrared technology to avoid false detections
- Video uploads automatically to the cloud, and users are alerted to new activity on their smartphones
- Just about all feature two-way audio so that guests can speak to and be heard by you.
- Video files are shareable on social media — whether it’s to alert neighbors or your local police department by way of Twitter, you can “crowdsource” security.
- Begin with a video doorbell, then add secondary cameras.
One of the most popular WiFi-enabled HD security cameras is the Canary Pro.
There is no installation required, just set it up wherever you like, connect to your internet to stay connected and be protected. Features include 24/7 live footage, HD + Night Vision, Smart Alerts, Built-in Siren and Climate Monitor. Exclusive offers, including a one year premium service subscription, are available now at all Kinetic retail locations.
Most Americans spend anywhere from $50-$500 online each month on material items delivered to them, according to an industry survey.
One in five said they’ve had items worth $1,000 or more arrive through a parcel service. This, despite the newsworthy statistic that as many as 11 million homes experienced package theft just in the last year, according to one report.
Maybe it’s time to consider all the options.
Other tricks and tips
The best approach to security is layered and redundant — “team tackling,” in football terms.
- Track your packages All three major carriers offer tracking. USPS’s Informed Delivery app will send you alerts about package arrivals — and you can post delivery instructions for the carrier, such as carrying a package inside a screen porch or to a side door.
- Arrange concierge service Increasingly, big postal carriers and even Amazon are supporting a cottage industry of last-mile package handlers. (Check out Fetch and Package Concierge.) Amazon last year launched a program to create a fleet of contract last-milers in an effort to bolster shipping security, transparency, and control.
- Deliver to your work Most package delivery takes place during regular hours of business. If you drive to work, especially, but even if you don’t — consider having your package delivered at work. An alternative is a neighbor, friend or family member — even a nearby local business.
- Create a little “locker” If you live in a semi-rural or rural area, consider building or buying a shelter or box with a padlock-able latch. Then, buy WiFi-connected padlocks from Master Lock and others. BoxLock is a connected, scanner-enabled padlock that opens when the right package barcode is scanned, then sends users an alert.
- Utilize your big “locker” For those with garages, today’s best garage door openers are smart, but even a 10-year-old Craftsman can be made smartphone-interactive with a small investment of money and know-how.
For any of these technology solutions begin by considering your broadband connection. First, gauge your download and upload speeds as measured in megabits per second (Mbps) at Speedtest.Windstream.net.
Without Kinetic 1-Gig Fiber Internet download and upload speeds are likely asymmetrical. The Federal Communications Commission has set the minimum threshold for modern broadband internet at 25 Mbps down (what TV streaming consumes) and 3 Mbps up (video doorbells). Many WiFi-enabled devices don’t draw down upload speeds, but the video does. Eufy video doorbells shoot at a 2,560x1,920 resolution!
Home high-speed Kinetic Internet is faster and more reliable than FCC-defined broadband.
Learn what you can do with it, and begin making your home a smart home.