Are the new body and luggage scanners even necessary???

When more tools and machines are introduced to maintain the high standards of safety and security required, that’s when you know that this is something not to be taken lightly.


Last week the Immigration and Checkpoints Authority (ICA) announced it will implement a new BioScreen security system at all air, land and sea checkpoints to enhance the level of security at all checkpoints.

This week, Changi Airport introduced separate trials for two screening systems at two boarding gates at Terminal 3.


The new systems, allow security checks to be done in a faster and more convenient manner.

Luggage scanners

The first trial involves the use of computed tomography security screening equipment to screen hand-carry luggage at the boarding gates just before passengers board their flights.

Currently, passengers need to take electronic devices such as laptops and tablets out from their hand-carry luggage to be placed on a separate tray for screening.

Using advanced 3D screening technology, the new CT screening equipment will allow passengers to keep their electronic devices in their luggage thereby saving them time.

Body scanners

To improve screening capabilities, Changi Airport is introducing a body scanner that uses millimetre wave technology to detect both metallic and non-metallic items.

After removing items in their pockets or on their body, passengers simply need to walk into the body scanner and be scanned, a process which takes only a few seconds.

If a concealed item is detected, a non-invasive outline image indicating the item’s location will be generated automatically.

The NTUC has been actively pushing for the implementation of  technology and equipment in order to boost productivity. This is exactly it!


Besides cutting down the time taken to screen a passenger before his or her flight, the process also means full-body pat-downs become less frequent, which leads to better productivity for security personnel doing security checks before boarding.

It also helps to make the jobs of security personnel easier and faster.

But why the need to make jobs, people and processes productive?

The answer is simple, when jobs are made productive, it means that lesser people are needed for that role, and the excess manpower can be re-skilled to be re-deployed to other roles.

And for a sector such as the security sector where the remuneration is low and hours are long, productivity is all the more needed to help the security officers earn more and work lesser hours and ensure that they have enough rest time to work better.

The President of the Union of Security Employees Hareenderpal Singh shared in a recent letter to the Straits Times Forum that the pay, image and service standards of security officers are improved when productivity is improved.

Hence, such technology is definitely needed to help security officers earn more and lead a more meaningful life.

Image Credits: Straits Times, TODAY, Changi Airport Group.

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Arthur Lee

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