CALGARY — Over the past several months the Vora family has seen packages snatched off the front porch and out of the mailbox of their Killarney home.

The couple have several security cameras on their property, including two at their front door, that have recorded the thieves in action.

The first time was in the summer when Shabnam Vora received a notification a package had arrived.

“When I got home there was no package,” she said. “But we are lucky enough to have a nest camera, so I checked my app and sure enough I saw someone come up and steal our package.”

Over the course of the next few months several more packages were brazenly snatched in broad daylight. Three of the videos appear to show the same person, clad in a dark hooded jacket, carrying an Adidas sports bag.

The experience has left Vora bewildered.

“We feel violated," Vora said. "We don’t know what we are missing and what we are not missing. We just keep going through our history of parcels and letters and making sure that we have received things or not.“

While the items stolen were not of a high value, most were baby supplies, and makeup, Vora said knowing someone seemsto be watching their home and waiting for deliveries is unnerving.

“It’s extremely creepy,” she said. "Even when you watch the video, it makes you more creepy ... When you watch it, you see how bold they are.”

Vora is not alone in feeling creeped out by a new brand of Calgary crook. Package theft, or “porch piracy” as it's often called is a growing problem and police expect it to increase in the next few months.

“We are going to see an increase during the holiday season,” said Calgary police Sgt. Doug Crippen.

Police rarely catch porch pirates in the act, but Crippen said they are frequently nabbed committing other crimes.

“We may not get to interact with that offender until they are caught down the road,” he said. “Once we start interacting with them, then what happens is through our investigation, we are able to work back and see this person was a victim of their previous crime and we are able to lay criminal charges.”

Crippen said there are steps people can take to lessen their chances of being a victim of package theft, including:

  • Have your package delivered to your workplace.
  • Ship your package to a nearby store which deals with your delivery company.
  • Require a signature for drop-off or pickup.
  • Track your package online
  • Ask a neighbour to look out for your package if you’re not home.

The Voras have reported their thefts to police and they tried most of the suggested options, but so far none have stopped the porch pirate from striking again.

They also put a note on their front door asking for all packages to the back yard, but not all couriers will do that.

The couple have now ordered a secure drop-off box for their home.

They are hoping by coming forward and sharing the videos from their security camera someone may recognize the thieves hitting their front step and help put an end to their porch piracy.