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Singapore Ministry of Home Affairs’ tech innovations

Image credit: www.mha.gov.sg/Home Team News

In a recent OpenGov article, we reported the passing of the Home Team Science and Technology Bill by the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA).

The Home Team Science and Technology Agency (HTX) is to be established. It will focus on developing ways of fighting the manifesting threats faced by agencies under the Home Affairs.

As part of this new initiative, OpenGov looks at the ways in which Singapore’s Home Team has been employing new technological methods.

Forensic Science

The Singapore Police Force’s (SPF) Forensics Division oversees that crime scenes are studied by strictly following the scientific and legal requirements constructed for it. This is to ensure minimal lost of evidence from the scene.

SPF has implemented Science and Technology (S&T), such as portable 3D scanning tools, in its crime investigation methods which have increased the efficacy of work.

Investigations and analysis would previously require the manual measurement and calculation of bloodstain patterns, and the bringing of physical evidence back to labs for analysis.

With the use of 3D scanning tools, the physical evidence can be processed on-site, and the results can be immediately shared with investigators for the identification of suspects.

Researchers at the Home Team Investigation Laboratory (HTIL) have also developed a DNA analyser, an all-in-one system which aids in identifying suspects and/or victims within two hours. This is greatly reduced from six to eight hours in the previous systems.

Robotics

MATAR (Multipurpose All-Terrain Autonomous Robot) possess video analytic capabilities, conducts patrols autonomously and detects audio anomalies.

As a robot, it allows for greater efficiency as it will never encounter feeling fatigue or replicate the human error. It provides more support by spanning across larger areas.

The main purpose of MATAR is to ensure that Singapore is always kept safe and secure.

It has already been employed by the SPF at National Day Parades.

MATAR has had a recent upgrade of holding Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAV).

The SPF has been deploying UAVs on-site and conducting trials on them for enforcement, traffic management and crowd monitoring.

These vehicles provide a huge advantage as they are highly mobile and versatile, thus being able to perform functions more efficiently.

Immigration checkpoints

The Immigration & Checkpoints Authority (ICA) employs the use of Automated Biometrics & Behavioural Screening Suite (ABBSS) in its security operations. It is made up of a network of facial recognition cameras.

It can process large amounts of data at rapid speeds. It can also be placed on a tripod and positioned at places or be worn as body cameras by officers.

This technology is crucial for enhancing operational capabilities as Singapore’s checkpoints see over 280,000 travellers daily. ABBSS speeds up the immigration clearance process in an efficient manner.

ICA also employs technologies such as thumbprint and iris biometrics in its immigration clearance processes.

Exoskeleton

Singapore Civil Defence Force (SCDF) is employing the use of an exoskeleton for the carrying of heaving equipment, such as breathing apparatus, to an accident scene.

The exoskeleton is designed as such to aid firefighters by increasing the load-bearing capacity.

Hence, they would better be able to carry bulky and heavy equipment to the scene and perform their rescue operations more effectively.

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