Why are we introducing fingerprint checks at our land checkpoints?

The system will allow us to verify travellers’ identities and safeguard our borders.


Singapore has one of the busiest land checkpoints in the world, with approximately 400,000 people crossing the Tuas and Woodlands checkpoints daily. In order to safeguard our borders, especially in the current heightened security climate, the Immigration & Checkpoints Authority (ICA) has put in place a Bioscreen system to capture the thumbprints of those arriving and departing from Singapore’s checkpoints.

The system was first launched in April 2016, and progressively rolled out at our air, sea and land checkpoints. It has proven to be highly effective. From 25 September 2017, the BioScreen system was progressively extended to car travellers at the land checkpoints. 

Are all travellers subjected to fingerprint checks?

The BioScreen system is being progressively rolled out as a trial at land checkpoints, so only selected car travellers aged six and above will be subjected to fingerprint checks. These travellers will need to step out of their car at the car counter in order to scan both thumbprints on the BioScreen machine.

Will the BioScreen lead to congestion at the checkpoints?

ICA is mindful of the clearance time taken for each traveller, and will balance that with the need to ensure security at our checkpoints. ICA is monitoring the trial at the car zones closely, and will refine the process where necessary. In the meantime, ICA seeks the understanding and co-operation of travellers if they experience slightly longer immigration clearance time.

Are there any travellers who will be exempted from the fingerprint checks, e.g. disabled persons or those with fading fingerprints?

Children below the age of six and persons whose fingerprints cannot be read need not undergo fingerprint checks. Travellers who have special needs and those with fingerprint issues will be assisted by ICA officers.

For more information, visit ICA website.

This article is accurate as of Sep 2017. For latest updates, head over to www.ica.gov.sg.

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