SINGAPORE: Security officers in Singapore will soon be required to undergo additional training to recognise terrorist threats if they want to work in places other than warehouses and condominiums, according to a Singapore Police Force news release on Thursday (Oct 19).
The police said that security officers have traditionally "played an important role" in securing homes and commercial areas, but that "given the rising threat of terrorism, there is a need to further raise their skills and competencies".
Attacks overseas have shown that well-trained security officers are able to detect and deter terrorist attacks, the police added.
From Jan 1, 2020, security officers will be able to obtain a third basic licensing unit, called "Recognise Terrorist Threats", in addition to the two basic licensing units they already have to get.
Those who do not complete their terrorist threat recognition training by Jan 1, 2020, will still be able to keep their security officer licence, but can only work at warehouses and condominiums until they complete their training.
The police told Channel NewsAsia that it would also consider making this training compulsory for all security officers.
Training for the new basic licensing unit will consist of a two-day Workforce Skills Qualification course. It will train security officers in "awareness of terrorist threats", as well as in observation skills to recognise "person-borne, vehicle-borne and object-based threats", said the police.
It added that it anticipated about 80 per cent of all currently active security officers will be able to obtain the new qualification.
Security officers who have completed an earlier Workforce Skills Qualification course called "Handle Counter Terrorism Activities" will be deemed to have met the new qualification's requirement.
"The new licensing requirement will improve the skills and hence also the wages of security officers," police said.
The new qualification was developed in consultation with the Security Tripartite Cluster, which overseas the progressive wage model for the security sector.