While Australians are increasingly taking precautions to protect their online security, only 29 per cent are locking their letter boxes . This is despite the fact mailboxes are a relatively simple way for fraudsters to access personal information.
“Credit cards, payslips and personal identification are among the many documents stolen from mailboxes across Australia, making this standard a welcome publication for both the industry and communities across the country,” said Head of Stakeholder Engagement, Daniel Chidgey.
“A rise in the number of medium to high density apartment buildings calls for banks of mailboxes to be situated inside private entrances rather than out on the street,” said John Maynard, Chair of the Committee responsible for the standard. “Without clear guidelines in place, mailbox banks have previously been put on the sidewalk in full view of passers-by, meaning mail fraud has continued to increase.”
Standards Australia have published an updated mailbox standard, AS 4253:2019 Mailboxes, to help combat mail theft and identity fraud. The recent publication is aimed at improving the security of individual mailboxes and banks of mailboxes.
“The previous standard considered ease of access and was designed around the suburban mailbox, it has now been updated to consider the public environment of banks of mailboxes.”
The standard is an important step in protecting the personal documentation of Australians by aiming to increase the security of the contents of letterboxes. It outlines guidance around secure entry to banks of mailboxes, including where they should be placed and how they can be accessed.
“To comply with this standard, local councils will be required to update their development control plans, ensuring developers are aware that new apartment applications require evidence of mailboxes being situated inside secure private entrances,” said Mr Maynard.
“This standard is an example of how Standards Australia continues to make a positive impact by developing standards aimed at improving products, processes and services that people use every day,” concluded Mr Chidgey.