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Characteristics of Suspicious Packages

Find out what to look for if you receive a suspicious letter or package.

Characteristics of suspicious letters and packages:

  • Marked "Personal" or "Private," especially when delivered to a work address
  • Misspelled words or inaccurate addressee's name or title
  • Addressed to a person's title only
  • Distorted handwriting, homemade labels, or cut-and-paste lettering on the package address
  • Protruding wires, aluminum foil, oil stains, or peculiar odor
  • Fictitious or unfamiliar return address
  • Cancellation or postmark showing a different location from the return address
  • Excessive postage
  • Excessive weight
  • Rigid, irregular shape, soft spots, bulges
  • Lopsided or uneven envelope
  • Unprofessional wrapping with several kinds of tape or string
  • Warnings such as "Fragile," "Handle with care," or "Rush"
  • Sloshing sound
  • Ticking sound