Singapore has raised the level of security at its already strict road border with Malaysia, installing a scanning system that that can accurately check vehicles for a range of weapons including firearms and explosives. Set for introduction at Tuas checkpoint in June, around 40 officers have been trained to use the x-ray detection system, which follows mandatory thumb scan checks for drivers crossing the border, brought in by Singapore last year.
Designed to be used alongside existing manual checks, Singapore’s state-of-the-art scanning technology works by using a powerful sensor that can detect hidden compartments used to smuggle dangerous weapons. Should anything on the banned list be detected the vehicle will then be the subject of a more intensive search.
Radiographic scanning tech will also be used to police and enforce the South East Asian country’s particularly strict drug laws; its Misuse of Drugs Act presumes those in possession of three grams of morphine or 15 grams of cannabis to be traffickers, while 30 grams and 400 grams of the same drugs would lead to the death penalty.
“The scanners send a detailed image of the vehicle. Officers inspecting the scans for explosives and firearms, will also be able to combat smuggling, with the capability to also check for contraband and counterfeit cigarettes," said Muhammed Nagib, from Singapore’s immigration and checkpoint authority.
"It allows officers to have a more targeted approach on the buses and also to increase the detection capabilities of the officers."
In related news to the Tuas security measures, which when they enter service will be carried out before immigration clearance, Singapore is working on the use of artificial intelligence (AI) to police its maritime borders. Reports last year revealed that the Asian financial hub was using AI there to isolate x-ray images of illicit items from entering the country, updating its database of previously scanned images to help it become better at identifying them.
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