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Postal Inspector Denise Backus: 703-292-4126

September 19, 2006

Suspicious Mail: Four Agencies Offer One Safety Message

Washington, DC -- Few aspects of society today are as safe as the U.S. Mail. In fact, the likelihood any business or individual will receive a hazardous substance or device through the mail is one in many billions. But everyone must practice continued vigilance, caution, and common sense to identify suspicious items in the mail to help ensure the safety of all Americans.

So, what should you do if you receive a suspicious mailpiece or package? To answer that question, four federal agencies have joined forces to produce a new "Suspicious Mail or Packages" poster to increase public awareness.

The new version of Poster 84 illustrates common characteristics of a suspicious mailpiece and recommends actions to take in the event such a mailpiece is identified.

Spearheaded by the U.S. Postal Inspection Service and Department of Homeland Security, this effort to deliver a single message from the agencies most responsible for handling a wide range of securiy issues was joined by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.

"By providing a single, uniform message from the federal agencies that most often assist with suspicious mail or packages, we can help increase awareness and preparedness among all mailers, businesses, and employees," says Chief Postal Inspector Lee R. Heath. "Although the odds of receiving dangerous mail are extremely unlikely, this poster belongs in every mailroom in the country."

Poster 84, Suspicious Mail or Packages, is available for viewing and printing at, and copies may be requested through your local Post Office.

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