Letter and Parcel Bomb Recognition
Mail bombs have been contained in letters, books, and parcels of varying sizes, shapes, and colors. Following is a list of possible indications of suspicious mail.
- Letters feel rigid, appear uneven or lopsided, or are bulkier than normal.
- Oil stains may be present on the wrapper.
- Use of excessive amount of postage.
- The sender is unknown.
- No return address.
- Unusual restricted endorsements such as "Personal", "Private", "to be only opened by..."
- The addressee normally does not receive personal mail at the office, or the package was unexpected.
- Name and/or title of addressee are not accurate, or a title is listed but no name.
- Address is prepared to insure anonymity of sender (i.e., homemade labels, cut and paste lettering).
- Mailing emits a peculiar odor.
- Mail appears to have been disassemble, reglued, or excessively secured.
- Handwriting appears distorted or foreign.
- Protruding wires, tinfoil, or string are present.
- Pressure or resistance is noted when removing the contents.
- Outer container shape is irregular or asymmetric or has soft spots or bulges.
- Wrapping exhibits previous use such as traces of glue, mailing labels, return addresses or tape.
- Several combinations of tape are used to secure the parcel.
- Unprofessionally wrapped parcel is endorsed "Fragile-Handle with Care" or "Rush-Do not Delay."
- Package makes a buzzing or ticking noise.
- Contents of parcel make a sloshing sound.
- Mailing is postmarked from a place to which you have no connection.
If you suspect a mailing is dangerous and are unable to verify the contents:
- Do not open the article.
- Isolate the mailing and secure the immediate area.
- Do not put in water or a confined space such as a desk drawer or filing cabinet.
- If possible, open windows in the immediate area to assist in venting potential explosive gases.
- Contact Security immediately.