Lt. Jason Erickson with Benton County Sheriff's Office says a lot of times, theft can be prevented.

"Some of the most common things our deputies come in contact with when they go to noise complaints and vehicle prowls is that cars are unlocked," said Lt. Erickson.

Outbuildings, shops, garages, or any place that should be locked--needs to be.

"Most of the time people are just going to move on if the door is locked. They're looking for convenience and unlocked vehicles so just making sure you're securing your property," said Lt. Erickson.

Be sure not to leave things out in plain sight. If you're starting your holiday shopping early, put those bags away while you make your stops.

As we reach the last few months of 2021, porch pirates come out of the woodwork once again as more packages start coming in.

Officer Sebastian Castilleja with the Kennewick Police Department says 'tis the season for porch pirates.

"Around the holidays when people are getting a lot of packages we see, from going and taking a couple of those reports--a few a month to probably daily," said Officer Castilleja.

You can ask the delivery service to put the package somewhere safe, track your order, or schedule it to come when you're home.

"Criminals look for opportunities. So if they see a package in plain view. That's an opportunity they see, and they take it," said Officer Castilleja.

Surveillance can also be useful for more high-profile crimes if they happen on or near your property because police can use it for evidence.

"We go through a neighborhood if we have a high-profile case and we will hit up, we'll look for all those cameras we can to help piece together how the person entered that neighborhood, what vehicle they were driving, if we can get a description, if there were multiple vehicles," said Lt. Erickson.

If something looks out of place, call the non-emergency number at 509-628-0333.