MINNEAPOLIS (AP) -- The Postal Service will send alerts to a million Twin Cities area homes this week on how to guard against the growing problem of mail thefts.
The Postal Service found a rise of 200 percent when comparing thefts in September 1999 with those in September 2002, said Inspector Susan Matt. The numbers used as a basis for comparison were not immediately available, she said.
"It's a growing problem," she said. "We don't feel it's reached epidemic proportions yet, but we're going to blanket the area to try to cut down the occurrences."
The postcard warnings will be one of the largest mass mailings done by the St. Paul field office, which serves Minnesota, North Dakota, South Dakota and western Wisconsin, Matt said.
Mail thieves often look for cash, personal information or checks they can alter to get money, Matt said.
"We're not trying to be alarmists here," she said. "But we want to let people know that this can happen."
U.S. Attorney Thomas Heffelfinger and St. Paul Postal Inspector-in-charge Peter Hanson will be among the officials discussing the mailings at a news conference Monday.
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