Package thieves, porch pirates, box bandits — whatever you want to call them; they are a growing problem across the nation.

A new national survey from U.S. News & World Report found that about half of American homeowners polled have had deliveries stolen. About a third of those homeowners caught the thieves in the act.

The survey included 2,000 Americans who have home security cameras.

They were asked a variety of questions, including how often they check their security footage and what they use their cameras to observe.

Crime was an obvious reason for people purchasing cameras, and an overwhelming amount (90%) said they feel that security camera are a good crime deterrent.

But despite the prevalence of home security cameras, more than three-quarters of respondents said they still worry about package thieves.

Nearly half (47%) said they’ve had packages stolen; even more (55%) said they’ve actively taken steps to prevent thefts.

With the busy holiday season in full swing, and with more shoppers opting for delivery than ever, the risk of deliveries being stolen is likely to only go up.

Online shopping during the holidays went up 64% from 2019 to 2021, according to the survey’s publisher. This year, FedEx alone had delivered around 6.2 million packages every day to homes and businesses across the country.

And despite the rise in home security cameras, there’s still little chance that a porch pirate will be arrested and successfully charged for pulling a Grinch.

A 2022 Package Theft Report by found that 44% percent of people who caught a package thief in the act probably had enough evidence to get that person arrested, but those apprehended thieves rarely face severe charges.

While mail theft is a federal crime and can result in stiff penalties, that law only applies to packages and parcels placed in or near mailboxes. If a package is dropped on your steps, you’re on your own, said.

If the median value of your package is less than $50, the theft will be considered a misdemeanor in much of the country – including California. In the Golden State, any theft under $950 is considered petty theft (a misdemeanor.)

So what can you do to reduce your risk of falling prey to a package thief? That is, if you’re not like the 55% of Americans polled who said they aren’t already taking proactive steps. recommends picking secure delivery locations when you’re not at home, i.e. your work’s mailroom or routing the deliver to a neighbor who you know is home. There are also services provided by companies like Amazon which provide secure lockers for your packages, although those are not available in all cities.

But arguably the most surefire way to avoid getting your package swiped from your stoop: require a signature. You’ll have to make sure you’re home when your delivery arrives, but that inconvenience could save you your hard-earned money and prevent a loved one from losing out on a holiday gift.