What New Yorkers need to know about the ‘rise’ in mail theft

New Yorkers should be on the defensive against mail theft given the recent spike in stolen mail, including checks and credit cards, Attorney General Letitia James’ office said this week.

“Stealing mail is an invasion of privacy, it’s a federal crime and it’s causing real problems,” James said in a statement.

Stolen emails can lead to identity theft and “destroyed credit card reviews” when bad actors get hold of people’s personal and financial information, she added.

What is mail theft?

Mail theft is a crime under federal law and is punishable by up to five years in prison. This is a different offense than email fraud, where someone intends to scam others through the email system. It’s also a crime, but an offender faces up to 20 years in prison and a fine of up to $250,000.