Protecting Your Mail

The U.S. Postal Service reaches every home and business in the country. The vast majority of the mail it delivers arrives intact, but thieves persist in their efforts to steal it.

Postal Inspectors use proven remedies to address the problem. They team with the Postal Service to devise new security strategies that thwart thieves. You can help by reporting suspected mail theft or identity theft.

Here is what you can do to protect your mail from thieves:

  • Use the letter slots inside your Post Office for your mail, or hand it to a letter carrier.
  • Pick up your mail promptly after delivery.
  • Do not leave it in your mailbox overnight. If you are expecting checks, credit cards, or other negotiable items, ask a trusted friend or neighbor to pick up your mail.
  • If you are expecting and did not receive a check or other valuable mail, contact the issuing agency immediately.
  • If you change your address, immediately notify your Post Office and anyone with whom you do business via the mail.
  • Do not send cash in the mail.
  • Tell your Post Office when you will be out of town, so they can hold your mail until you return.
  • Report all suspected mail theft to your local police and Postal Inspector.
  • Consider starting a neighborhood watch program. By exchanging work and vacation schedules with trusted friends and neighbors, you can watch each other’s mailboxes (as well as homes).
  • Consult with your local Postmaster for the most up-to-date regulations on mailboxes, including the availability of locked centralized or curbside mailboxes.

For more online resources and report forms, visit the U.S. Postal Inspection Service.

If you see a mail thief at work, or if you believe your mail was stolen, call police or DPS immediately, then call Postal Inspectors at 877-876-2455 (press 3).

This posting is intended to aide in theft awareness to the USC community. For more information on theft prevention, click here.