An additional measure of wearing an electronic device for the 14 days during the stay-home notice (SHN) will be enforced for travellers entering Singapore from 11 August onwards.
In a joint press release by the Immigration and Checkpoints Authority (ICA), Ministry of Manpower (MOM), and Ministry of Education (MOE), all incoming travellers entering Singapore who are serving their SHN outside of an SHN dedicated facility will need to don an electronic monitoring device throughout the 14 days.
This includes Singapore Citizens, Singapore Permanent Residents, long-term pass holders, work pass holders, and their dependants.
Those aged 12 and below are exempted.
According to the press release, this new regulation was enacted to enhance compliance with the SHN regime and allow monitoring of SHN at places of residence more effectively, the press release read.
This will thereby “reduce the risk of transmission of COVID-19 by incoming travellers to the local community”.
The procedure will be “on arrival in Singapore, travellers serving their SHN at their place of residence will be issued with an electronic monitoring device at the checkpoints, after immigration clearance”.
“They will need to activate the electronic monitoring device upon reaching their place of residence,” the press release stated.
If the device is not activated as required, the authorities will follow up to determine the traveller’s location, and assist to resolve any technical difficulties, or take enforcement action, wherever necessary.
Electronic device triggers an alert to authorities if SHN is violated
During the 14-day period, persons wearing the electronic devices may receive notifications on the devices and need to acknowledge them in a timely manner.
Any attempt to leave the place of residence or tamper with the electronic device will trigger an alert to the authorities, who will then conduct follow-up investigations.
The device monitors through GPS and 4G/Bluetooth signals that determine if persons on SHN are within the range of their place of residence.
The only exception will be when the person is leaving their place of residence for an appointment for the COVID-19 test. After serving their SHN, they need to deactivate the device and dispose of or return it in accordance with the instructions.
Those who do not comply with the requirements of SHN or are caught tampering with the device may be fined up to S$10,000 and jailed up to six months.
The press release added that for foreigners, authorities may take “further administrative actions”, such as revoking or shortening the validity of permits and passes to remain or work in Singapore.
Privacy data concerns
“The devices do not store any personal data and do not have any voice or video recording function,” said the agencies, elaborating that all data transmitted by the devices is protected by encryption.
Only authorised government officials will have access to the data collected by the devices for the purposes of monitoring and investigation.
Mandatory for travellers to take another COVID-19 test at the end of SHN
Since 18 June, all travellers entering Singapore have to be tested for COVID-19 for a second time before the end of their 14-day SHN.
The Ministry of Health (MOH) announced that the test will be scheduled a few days before the end of the SHN at an allotted testing facility.
Each person under an SHN will receive information on the scheduled appointment slot and venue via an SMS notification.
“It is an additional precautionary measure to detect the virus, especially given the risks of asymptomatic cases,” the press release stated.