Home Team Science and Technology Agency
Feature | HTX

Tackling Tomorrow’s Threats by Harnessing Science and Technology

Working at the forefront of science and technology, scientists and engineers at HTX (Home Team Science and Technology Agency) are developing transformative solutions that enhance Singapore’s safety and security.

Left: Lydia He, Data Scientist, xData, Enterprise Group, HTX

Right: Jovin Leong, DevOps Engineer, Sense-making & Surveillance Centre of Expertise, HTX 

A data scientist who finds unlocking new potential in data as intriguing as tackling routes when rock-climbing, and a passionate problem-solver who seeks to utilise his skillsets to develop solutions that better his community. Meet Lydia He and Jovin Leong, both Public Service Commission (PSC) Scholars who chose HTX as their parent agency and are now blazing a trail in their careers where passion meets purpose.

Lydia He

Tackling Tomorrow’s Threats by Harnessing Science and Technology
  1. Indoor rock-climbing tests the limits of technique and strength. I embrace the physical challenge and relish the fact that it is mentally stimulating as rock climbing is also about problem solving. The same route can be completed in more than one way, and it is fun to explore different methods to tackle each route.
    It's a little like data science which I find to be highly relevant as we are inundated with a massive amount of collected data. By thinking out of the box and focusing on uncovering patterns, we make sense of the data to improve productivity, enhance efficiency and scale new potential!
  2. After a fulfilling internship with MHA that opened my eyes to how technology enhances homeland security operations, and how new innovations are being developed to further augment Home Team capabilities, I was inspired to be part of an organisation where I can leverage my skillsets to do something meaningful. I saw that as homeland security challenges evolve, we need to help our Home Team frontline be better prepared and ready to tackle them.
  3. Now as a Data Scientist at HTX, I take on the same rigour as I would when rock climbing. One of my projects involves harnessing operations research methods such as mixed-integer linear programming to automate the planning and management of expertise and optimise resource allocation for the Singapore Prison Service. I also hold another portfolio to foster partnerships between HTX and external companies, both locally and globally, to create forward-looking solutions that could bring about a breakthrough in homeland security technologies.

Jovin Leong

Tackling Tomorrow’s Threats by Harnessing Science and Technology
  1. I’m passionate about problem solving, in particular, I’m motivated when solving problems better my community. While my choice to pursue the social sciences (Philosophy, Politics and Economics) had enabled me to better understand the science that underlie decisions and human behaviour, I later found myself greatly inspired by the quantitative and data-driven aspects of the social sciences. I transitioned into engineering and saw how data can empower the approach towards formulating solutions to society’s challenges, and also grew to enjoy development and data-centric work such as coding.
  2. What drew me to HTX is its work in improving our national security and bettering the lives of Singaporeans, which I find profoundly impactful. As a DevOps Engineer with the Sensemaking and Surveillance Centre of Expertise, I develop tools and processes for machine learning engineers to perform experiments, research, and modelling more systematically and effectively. One such project I’m working on is a system for object detection underwater using SONAR to assist with search-and-rescue operations. On a broader scale, I also look at the use of machine learning to improve data processes across the Home Team and enhance their work efficiency.
  3. I find my time at HTX to have also been abound with exciting opportunities to grow my capabilities, as the organisation works with a wide range of real-world use cases and continuously explores new areas of technology such as cloud, computer vision, Sensors and Internet of things (SIOT), and even LIDAR and SONAR.