Gadgets: Smart padlock protects front porch deliveries
The BoxLock is designed to prevent theft of delivery packages left by the front door. In addition to the anti-theft aspect, packages are protected from bad weather, which has victimized me. Nothing like having a box soaked in a thunderstorm.
The BoxLock smart padlock solves both these problems. According to BoxLock, this is the first of its kind, an internet-connected security padlock that is attached to a delivery storage box or anything of your choice. After a simple setup, you’ll see how well it works to protect your deliveries.
Like many of you, when I open new gadgets the instructions often never get read, but with the smart lock, you’ll need to follow the included instructions. The setup isn’t complicated but to ensure it works, you’ll have to set up a BoxLock account with a secure password within the accompanying app (iOS and Android).
Once your account is active follow the instructions to get the BoxLock setup, which includes getting it linked with your Wi-Fi.
You must have an online account with whoever deliverers your package, which can include Amazon and major delivery services such as FedEx, UPS and the USPS. The BoxLock instructions tell you exactly what settings you’ll need to set up, which is all straightforward and only has to be done once, during the setup process.
After the setup, as a BoxLock company representative pointed out, you’ll be ready to fight off porch pirates since the receptacle with the BoxLock remains locked until a package is delivered.
My biggest question, which I’m sure anyone has, is how does the system work as far as verification, and opening and closing the lock when a package arrives.
When drivers get to your house for the delivery, they scan the package for their system (they all use handheld mobile scanners), then scan the label with the BoxLock. Once the label is approved by the lock, it opens allowing the driver to leave the package securely inside.
You’ll then get a push notification of the delivery.
As far as the receptacles to use, that’s really up to you, how much space you have and what you want it to look like. My father-in-law would have built me the most fashionable, stylish box imaginable, made of wood.
BoxLock sent me a Step2 ($99.99) deluxe package delivery box (25-by-15-by-11-inches) with my test lock and they were a perfect pair. It features a water-resistant design, hinged lid, and a lock latch, which can be used with the smart lock or any traditional padlock. This is just one of several choices in a line of certified BoxLock storage containers available.
Whatever receptacle you use, think about mounting it to your porch or patio. If you don’t want it that permanent, how about dropping a 50-pound bag of sand in the bottom? That will certainly add a really inexpensive additional layer to the security.
The BoxLock (8.46-by-4.25-by-3.54-inches) has a weather-resistant case, a push to scan button on top which activates a bottom side barcode scanner. Inside is a chargeable battery, good for 30 to 60 days.
I’ve always felt like if someone’s going to try and steal something, I’m going to do my best to not make it easy for them. This system adds a sold layer of protection, which is even better than having a neighbor look out for your upcoming delivery. Common sense alone tells me this is a better system to keep packages secure from those lurking for a free front porch score vs just sitting there waiting to disappear.
Late last week I asked one of my local delivery drivers what they thought of home delivery security systems such as this and instantly I got two thumbs up and a smile.
Certainly an unofficial endorsement but in my mind, enough said.