PHILADELPHIA - You may want to think twice before dropping mail and checks into postal service collection boxes in philadelphia.
Law enforcement officials say thieves are breaking into the blue mail boxes and stealing checks, forging signatures and stealing personal information from mail. It's costing victims thousands of dollars.
Thieves are using phishing techniques to steal mail or using duplicate master keys and getting ahold of the mail that way.
Once theives have your check, they have your routing and bank account numbers -- they can pretend to be you.
However there are ways to avoid risking having your check stolen, especially if you're the one sending it.
If you're going to use the post office to mail checks, financial expert Dan Roccato recommends that you don't put your mail in the box overnight. Instead, submit your mail for same-day pickup.
He also advises to never put your social security number on checks.
And if you are looking for alternatives to pay your bill or send money, Dan Roccato recommends using options like digital BillPay, Venmo, Zelle or other such apps that make it easy to send money digitally.
Over a 150 billion pieces of mail were sent last year so it's important to try to avoid using the postal service to send checks.
If you were waiting on a stimulus check and you believe it was stolen, you should visit irs.gov to try and get the process started to get it back.
If you didn't get your stimulus check, you can also claim it in your taxes.
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