This time of year, you may have to order or ship presents and gifts for your loved ones. And with recent concerns rising about so-called "porch pirates" - thieves who target package deliveries during the holiday season - the North Tonawanda Police Department has some tricks to help protect your packages.
First, if you can not be home when it's delivered, police say you should consider having it sent to a family member, friend or neighbor you trust, or have it sent to your workplace.
You can also have the post office hold it for you, or require a signature upon delivery. That will ensure your package is picked up in person.
Police also recommend leaving a detailed note for your postal carrier with instructions on the best places to leave your deliveries when you're away.
If you're sending packages to your loved ones, police say you should always notify them; surprising them means they won't be able to make sure it's received safely. And when you send or are expecting a package, make sure to track its progress online.
And most importantly, police urge you to speak up if you see something that looks suspicious.