Even with stepped-up security in Indonesia on the back of terror alerts as recently as last month, militants were still able to strike at the heart of the country's capital ("ISIS behind deadly Jakarta attack"; Jan 15).
It is never an easy task for a security force in any country to be solely responsible for the security of the nation.
In Singapore, the police and military are always on the alert for potential terrorist threats. But the onus must also lie on Singaporeans and those living in our country.
The civilian population, whether citizen or foreigner, must continue to be the "eyes and ears" on the ground, and should be trained to report any suspicious activity or object.
Constant reminders to do this should be put up on posters on the public transport system, on pamphlets distributed in community centres, malls and eating places, and on television and other forms of media.
Talks on the importance of vigilance can be held regularly to drive home the point. Perhaps these could be conducted by retired police and civil defence personnel.
Effort also has to be made to stem radicalisation, especially on social media.
The fight against terrorism cannot be the responsibility of security forces alone. Every resident in Singapore has to play a part and cannot take our current security and peace for granted.