USPS taking actions to help interdict flow of illegal drugs entering the U.S.

January 04, 2018

USPS – The U.S. Postal Service, and its law enforcement arm, the U.S. Postal Inspection Service, are taking actions to help interdict the flow of illegal drugs entering the United States. The Postal Service is deeply concerned about America’s opioid crisis and we will work tirelessly to address this serious societal issue.

International mail security is a responsibility the Postal Service shares with other federal agencies, including the U.S. Department of State, and the Department of Homeland Security. The Postal Service has prioritized obtaining Advance Electronic Data (AED) from the largest volume foreign postal operators and now collects AED for more than 90 percent of its outbound international mail.

The Postal Service currently receives data on a substantial amount of inbound shipments, including those originating in China. We’ve grown in-bound AED collection from one percent to approximately 35 percent just since 2015. The increase in the percentage of inbound items with AED is expected to continue to grow, especially as we increase our partnership with commercial providers and more countries develop their capacities to provide this data.

There have been significant improvements in our ability to seize these dangerous drugs from the mail. From FY2016 through August of this year, the Postal Inspection Service has achieved a three-and-a-half fold increase in international parcel seizures, and an eight-fold increase in domestic parcel seizures related to synthetic opioids.

The Postal Service agrees with the goals of proposed legislative solutions to increase data on inbound packages coming into the United States in order to improve the targeting of illicit drugs entering the country. However, we strongly recommend that data targets should be phased in beginning with countries that currently have the capability to provide this information.

The Postal Service is committed to taking all practicable measures to ensure our nation’s mail security and to provide the American public the best, most efficient service possible.