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Singapore government launches COVID-19 chatbot

The Singapore government has launched a new chatbot to aid employers to stay updated on the news following the COVID-19 virus.

This online bot provides answers based on the programmed questions on the existing situation. Employers are able to find out more information such as the help that is available for them and how to ensure business continuity in these trying times.

They are also able to get information on the measures for helping people and businesses which were announced during the recent Budget 2020. This includes a $4 billion package to support and stabilise the economy.

This bot was created by the Ministry of Trade and Industry (MTI) and the Government Technology Agency (GovTech). Minister of Trade and Industry Mr Chan Chun Sing said that this bot will serve to provide companies with timely information and updates on the situation regarding the virus.

“I hope it will be of use to our businesses and thank them for the strong support and partnership during this period. I am confident that together, we will be able to emerge stronger than before,” he said.

The chatbot can be accessed here.

Chatbots are a common feature used by most government agencies in Singapore. Government websites often come with a chatbot function which provides immediate and ease of access to information.

Last year, the Singapore Police Force (SPF) launched a chatbot-like digital avatar to allow the public to get up close and personal with the police force. Inspector Clif is the police force’s new digital avatar.

This feature allows online users to ask for security and safety-related questions on Facebook.

The name Clif is an acronym for the police force’s important central pillars- courage, loyalty, integrity, and fairness.

The avatar was created with the purpose of strengthening crime prevention and deterrence measures. It is also to connect with the public more via an online platform.

Inspector Clif supports SPF’s social media campaigns to manage cases such as property-related crime, scams and traffic issues.

The avatar has its own Facebook account that the public can follow. It constantly features posts that will share useful information on crime prevention measures and of the current safety and security issues.

Inspector Clif also walks the public through the everyday life of a police officer and provides an exclusive insight into their work lives. In addition, he provides safety and security related advice to other Facebook pages.

Replicating the role of an actual police officer, Inspector Clif has been designed to relay such information to the public in a friendly and approachable manner, to make SPF’s online presence more recognised, relatable and personable.

The police said that Inspector Clif was developed as a gateway for Singaporeans to keep up with the current digital consumption trends and to connect with the rising number of Singaporeans who use online platforms as a source for information and for interaction.

The police force aims for Inspector Clif to be the online platform that is frequented by the public to get information on safety and security issues in Singapore.

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