PHOENIX (3 On Your Side) - This Cyber Monday is expected to be a record-breaker, as consumer shift spending online during the pandemic. Julie Ryan Evans, the consumer editor for says the spike in online shopping this holiday season could lead to an increase in stolen packages.

We’ve all seen the videos from home surveillance systems of brazen criminals, snagging packages right from the front door.

"They're on high alert," she said. "They know people are shopping online."

To protect your presents from porch pirates, do a little a little planning.

"Ask the person, 'What’s the best place to ship the package?' Maybe it’s to a neighbor. Maybe it’s to their workplace, but just ask them if there’s any special instructions because that’s an easy way to mitigate any risk," Evans said.

Consumers may also want to consider the signature option for delivery.

"If you do that, they won’t just leave it on your porch then," Evans said.

Even if you’re careful, there is a chance that the perfect gift you picked out never shows up.

"You want to contact the company that sent it, first of all. Let them know that it never arrived. Maybe it’s an issue on their end and they can help you resolve it," Evans said.

Shoppers should also contact the delivery carrier, and possibly the police.

"You want to let them know so that they know if there are trends in the area or certain areas to be watching," Evans said.

With all of the extra online shopping this year, retail analysts are also expecting some shipping delays, so shop as early as possible to make sure your gifts arrive in time for the holidays.


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