Estes Designs Mailbox & Streetscapes recognizes that mailboxes are one of the most likely places in which identity theft can occur. Providing a protective covering for mail is not enough to ensure its security from individuals wishing to steal private documentation or other valuables that do not belong in their hands. With USPS mail deliveries to up to 100 million addresses per day, the safety of mail is really the responsibility of the recipient once placed into the mailbox by the carrier.
The Federal Trade Commission estimates that approximately 400,000 Americans alone have their mail – and identities – stolen.
Mailbox identity theft can occur in a couple of ways:
- Mail physically stolen out of the mailbox
- Thief’s request to re-route mail to alternative address using an easily accessible request card available at customer service desks
- The latter form of mail re-routing occurs when thieves collect home addresses from driving by the physical location, an address book, or by gathering trash that contains one’s address. Regardless of the form, these occurrences push the concern of how to address mailbox identity theft and how to prevent it from happening.
Estes Designs Mailbox & Streetscapes provides good safety practices to reduce risk of identity theft:
- Invest in a locking mailbox insert. Call us at (317) 899-5556 if you have any questions
- Track a general time frame for when your mail is delivered and retrieve it immediately after delivery
- Do not leave mail in the mailbox for an extended period of time
- Rent a Post Office box for periods of time when you will be unable to retrieve mail
- Use electronic payments and banking as much as possible to avoid sending checks and other payments through the mail
- Always deposit mail at the post office or with a carrier
- Notify the post office and all organizations from which you receive mail about address changes immediately
- Contact the issuing agency if fail to receive valuable mail within a certain time period