Use Caution When Accepting Deliveries at Home
Whether you shopped online or are fortunate enough to receive gifts from out of town loved ones, now is not the time to blindly open the door to delivery couriers.
This morning a rental van pulled into my driveway. I was not expecting anyone. Those who know me know that I “don’t do pop-overs.” Phone me from the driveway if you must, but don’t just show up at my door unannounced and expect me to answer it. I work from home and I’m a single parent and opening the door just isn’t something I freely do. Call me paranoid, hermit, cautious, whatever – I just don’t do popovers.
So anyway, this morning, the van pulls in. As I am a fan of Cyber Monday, I am expecting a number of deliveries of various treasures, but nothing from a Ryder Cargo Van.
I cautiously looked out the window, ok – covertly looked, to see a man get out, not dressed in any uniform nor any identifying logos. This is a big flag for me. Meanwhile my gal pal is on the phone with me and says, “Boy when we see a strange Ryder van pull up unexpectedly, we run for cover.” Nice Dawn, thanks. I’m already trying to determine who is encroaching on my space and you need to plant that little seed in my head.
Needless to say, unexpected and no identifying uniform or logo was not enough for me to merit opening the door. After he left, I found no package left in the garage or on the porch but I did locate a notice from FedEx stuck to the door notifying me that my signature was required. Note, I also did not receive any email stating to expect delivery.
Yes, it was the new laptop that I have been not so patiently waiting for. Great. And now delivery guy is gone, supposedly to return another day. Obviously disappointed, I called the 1-800 number on the sticker to inquire if it is the norm for their delivery personnel to be in rental vans. Apparently that is not unusual. (Good to know). But the operator did tell me that he should have been wearing a FedEx uniform. If he was, it was covered up by his gray hoodie and ski mask (ok the ski mask part was for embellishment but it might as well as have been as shady as he looked).
So while I am bummed that I don’t have an opportunity to play around with my new laptop this afternoon, I still do not regret refusing to open the door to this stranger.
It’s easy to get excited about gifts or flowers or any surprise delivery. However, especially during this season when houses full of presents are desirable to burglars, use caution before accepting deliveries.
Use this three-pronged litmus test: If something is unexpected; if something doesn’t seem right; or if there aren’t any identify logos or uniform, then don’t open the door.
Cautious or paranoid? Judge for yourself, but I’d rather be without a new laptop for an afternoon than to be a victim of a home invasion because I didn’t exercise due diligence in my own home.