By: William Sikkens
Host, User Friendly 2.0  Saturday’s at 5:00 p.m.

The IRS is sending out stimulus checks.  If you haven’t received yours yet, you are probably watching for it.  So are the bad guys.

Identity theft from mail theft is a problem that grows year after year.   A newer term, “porch pirates” apply to people who steal your packages.   Did you know that you can be informed about every delivery you are to receive?   This includes all your regular mail.

Our primary delivery companies including the US Post Office, UPS, and FedEx all offer systems in which you can register and receive notifications of deliveries.  If something is missing you can know about it.   Many companies including Amazon and Best Buy have services that can tell you when a package arrives as well.

The Post Office has a service called “Informed Delivery”.  This is free to use and allows you to get a scanned copy of the front of each envelope that you are supposed to receive.  If something is missing, you have a way to check for it.  No, they don’t open letters and provide scans of anything inside.  It’s just the front of each mail piece which is enough to know if your check or letter is missing.


In today’s world it seems like we have an online account for everything.  Many of these are trivial things that may not be that important.  Some resources, like your online banking and credit cards are extremely valuable resources that you want to protect.  Knowing what’s in or supposed to be in your physical mail is no different.

It is simple to use these free resources.

For the US Post Office, the link is   This site will set up a free account, verify your identity, and ask where you want to receive notifications.

UPS offers a service called “My Choice”.  With this you can see tracking information of packages sent to your address.  You can also register for delivery alerts and even watch your package in transit on a real-time map.  That link is

FedEx also offers a similar service to end users.   The “FedEx Delivery Manager” will tell you not only when a package is delivered but when one is sent to your address.  You can request holds and also see where your deliveries are.  Like the US Post Office and UPS the service is free.  Their link is

William (Bill) Sikkens has been an on-air technology expert since 2014. With an expertise in I.T., cyber security and software design he has had more than 20 years’ experience with advanced technology. Sikkens conceptualizes and designs custom applications for many professional industries from health care to banking and has the ability to explain the details in a way all can understand.  Article edited by Gretchen Winkler, who along with Jeremy Winkler are the co-hosts of User Friendly 2.0 here on The Answer Saturday’s at 5:00 p.m.

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Got a technology question or comment for Bill? Follow him on Twitter @sikkensw