Tamper-proof your holiday packages...with stickers


Earlier this week, one of my colleagues in Texas told me about a shipping problem she had recently, and asked me to warn others so it doesn't happen to them as they send out packages this holiday season.

My colleague's salsa company, Spirit of Texas Salsa, had shipped several boxes to Georgia and Arizona, only to find out that along the way someone had removed the salsa from them and in one box even replaced a case of mild salsa with old car parts!

Diabolical! But there's a simple solution: If you're shipping gifts or anything this holiday season, add a sticker to the bottom of your package. Assuming you've already covered one of your package's seams with the shipping label, covering the nether seam is an easy way to deter tampering. Security tape is the best option, although an expensive one. I've found that any old sticker does the job, giving thieves pause.

In this case the thief had cut the bottom of the packages open, leaving the UPS label, which covered the top flaps, undisturbed. This let the package complete its journey without raising suspicions, making it harder to track down who swiped the salsa. While UPS is investigating the problem and should be covering the loss, her small business's reputation has already been tarnished.

Can you imagine the reactions on Christmas morning if someone had replaced your nephew's present with a bunch of old oil filters during its shipment across the country? You wouldn't want to let a shipping problem like that tarnish your reputation as the "Cool Aunt," so put all those leftover campaign bumper stickers to good use this year and cover that package. Taking just a minute to make it easier to tell if your package has been tampered with is all it takes to make this holiday season a happy one for everyone you care about.