Don’t let the dishonest spoil the holidays for you. Vivint Doorbell Camera can help safeguard your home.
Every year, just after Thanksgiving, we turn our attention to the next big national event, Black Friday. This year the deals were not that great, but cyber shopping proved to be even better than previous years. I had done most of my black Friday shopping, in my pajamas, and before the Turkey was carved. Many of us have similar experiences with cyber Monday and with the Amazon Deals that occur throughout the holiday season. Fedex, UPS, USPS have shifted into turbo and are delivering packages as quickly as possible. Here is the weak link in the holiday spirit. Often we are not home when the packages or delivered or we live in a public place with prominent foot traffic. With this change of seasons, honest people must defend themselves from the dishonest.
According to a variety of sources, we can expect approximately 1.5 billion packages to be delivered this year and an estimated 23 million packages have been stolen from porches (vivint.com). Having talked to one of my friends recently, who is renting an apartment while her home is being built, she noted that she has had a total of six stolen this season. Apparently, her office would not hold packages and someone stole them from in front of her apartment. Truthfully, these people swoop and strike when we cannot be present/vigilant. They will wait until you are at work, when you are sleeping or when you are out and about. There are a few options that you can utilize to reduce this threat. You can request a tracking number, to better know when the delivery will be made. You can try to set up a drop location with some carriers, such as UPS “My choice” leaving a package at a UPS store for your convenience. You can pick up items at some other shipping locations “Amazon Locker” or you can try to arrange a time to be home for delivery. You can request carriers to drop the items inside a closed porch, or perhaps you can ask that they are left behind the home, etc. We all know that deliveries are so variable, and being home 24 hours is not a valid option for many of us. You cannot eliminate dishonesty, you cannot stop someone from following a package truck to your home and waiting to snag your item. Even if you ask the carrier to place the package out of site, to try to have a “sign for” package etc., packages still may disappear. In an ideal world, you would not have to do any of these steps.
I have been a customer of Vivint for over 6 years and have recently adopted their Smart Home Security System upgrades. Vivint Smart Home completed a 2000 person survey, to evaluate package theft across the U.S. The study found that 2/3 Americans changed their behavior based on Porch Piracy. Furthermore, the study detailed that nearly 50% adjusted their schedule to be home for delivery, 46% enacted some of the options listed above and roughly a third detailed that they changed/reduced online shopping/deliveries. Many of us have the mindset, “it won’t happen to me.” The survey showed that 45% of respondents knew someone who had been a victim of porch piracy and it appeared that Millennials were the most involved/concerned with this problem. Vivint suggested that 4/5 Millenials are involved with this process, 36% have recovered a stolen package and 50% of them have contacted law enforcement, shared video evidence and shared information via social media sites. As thieves become more tricky, we need to utilize all the tech that we can to protect our castle.
One of the first Smart Home enhancements, added to my home, was the Doorbell camera. Although this device will not prevent a thief from stealing your packages, you will be able to have video evidence, which will provide some peace of mind. You can adjust the sensitivity of the camera, adjust when it alerts you and you can visualize the image on your phone, either in real time or download clips. The camera has both daytime and nighttime modes, blends into your home very nicely and has a very wide angle of view. I have been able to set this to warn me, with motion, and I have been able to detect package deliveries, even before my doorbell is touched. I can activate the app, and hold a 2-way communication through my doorbell camera. I was really pleased with the clarity. You are able to visualize the face and read the name badge of the delivery person. You can see someone coming to your property before they know you are aware. If you are expecting a package, you can have the app open and wait for the delivery. This will allow you to watch the entry point, in real time. The best part of the system is, it is recording for you in the background, while you are worrying about other things. Thus, if a package is stolen, you can retrieve the clip for evidence.
The install was quick and straightforward, with full completion in just a few hours. It did not take all of that time to install just the doorbell, as I had 2 outside cameras installed as well. These cameras are currently watching the entrance points into my home. Combine this external surveillance with your monitored door/window sensors, remotely operable powered door locks, Vivint Element thermostat (Review coming soon), the indoor Vivint Ping camera (Review coming soon) and the new fire/smoke/Carbon monoxide/Freeze detectors and you have a state of the art Smart Home system. I worry less about thieves and the safety of my family, knowing that Vivint is monitoring my home 24/7. I do not suggest becoming complacent, as it is still important to take precaution. There is no surefire way to prevent thievery if someone has their heart set on it. I welcome you to learn more about Vivint at Vivint.com.