For one of my most recent orders from Amazon, the delivery driver dropped off the package on my doorstep like normal — but then Amazon followed up by sending an email, which included a photo taken of the package sitting right there in front of my door once it had been dropped off. The photo was obviously taken by the driver and, if you ask me, seems to be sort of a poor man’s response to all the porch piracy that’s on the rise. As if Amazon is basically saying, okay, there you go. If it’s not there when you get home, sorry pal — it wasn’t us.

People swiping unattended packages from porches and doorsteps is certainly not a new phenomenon and something that’s probably to be expected with the explosion in e-commerce. It’s starting to lead to some pretty wild solutions to deter those porch pirates, however, such as this one we told you about involving a glitter bomb booby-trap. And on the less dramatic front, Yale Home has introduced a new smart delivery box that’s meant for your front doorstep that can be weighted down, locked and represents a pretty simple way to keep your packages safe until you can get there to retrieve them.

The box, according to the company, “allows customers to receive packages and perishables deliveries (e.g. food, wine, cosmetics, medicine) securely and conveniently” and is meant to address the reality that almost 40% of American households say they’ve experienced some kind of porch pirate-related package theft.

Pros:

  • It’s more effective than a surveillance camera, which can be more of an after-the-fact ID solution than a deterrent, at least in some cases.
  • The box can also be weighted down (with sand, or even tethered to the porch), making it hard to just … pick up and steal, along with your package. It can also be locked remotely and will notify you via an app once a delivery is made.

Cons:

  • What’s to stop an Amazon driver who’s in a hurry from just throwing your package on the porch, outside of the box, anyway?
  • As you can see in the image of the box above, only packages of a certain size can fit inside (unlike the new mattress and box spring I just ordered, which were way too big to fit inside, of course).
  • A number of other companies are trying variants of this same thing — there’s iParcelBox and BoxLock, to cite a couple of examples. Credit to the team at Yale Home for trying, though, because porch piracy is annoying problem that seems to only be getting worse.

The company says the box will launch this spring and will be available at ShopYaleHome.com and major retailers. The box will cost $229 by itself, or $278 with an accompanying “Wi-Fi Bridge” that makes remote management of the box possible.

Andy is a reporter in Memphis who also contributes to outlets like Fast Company and The Guardian. When he’s not writing about technology, he can be found hunched protectively over his burgeoning collection of vinyl, as well as nursing his Whovianism and bingeing on a variety of TV shows you probably don’t like.