Profiling tech that trawls Web for info on criminals in minutes, drone jammer on show at Milipol event

TRD Singapore managing director Sam Ong with a jammer and a drone at Milipol Asia-Pacific 2019. ST PHOTO: TIMOTHY DAVID

SINGAPORE - Trawling the Web for information about potential criminal suspects could take investigators hours but profiling software by BLER Systems can do it in a matter of minutes, said its creators.

Besides collecting open-source information from social media or forums to form a profile, the WEBINT Center System also conducts image analysis to find other pictures of the suspect.

The software can be purpose-built for specific platforms but, more importantly, it cuts down on the time-consuming aspects of investigation work like monitoring or unearthing information about a suspect, said the Israeli company's account manager Alina Sobko.

"All you need are basic credentials to start the investigation and locate aliases or different accounts a person might have under different names," she told The Straits Times at the company's exhibition booth at Milipol Asia-Pacific 2019 on Tuesday (April 2).

The three-day conference, which ends on Thursday, features over 300 international exhibitors at the Marina Bay Sands Expo and Convention Centre.

They are showcasing the latest technology for law enforcement agencies in border security, crowd control, threat detection as well as drone and anti-drone systems.

BLER's software can help authorities identify and prevent terror incidents, said Ms Sobko.

BLER Systems' profiling software can be purpose-built for specific platforms, but more importantly it cuts down on time-consuming aspects of investigation work, said the Israeli company's account manager Alina Sobko. ST PHOTO: TIMOTHY DAVID

She said the company is in discussions with the authorities on its use here.

The software, which has been on the market for almost five years but is constantly updated, is being used in Europe and South-east Asia for law enforcement as well as banking, tax and human resource purposes.

Not only can it analyse materials in different languages and dialects, it can also interpret nuances and the sentiment behind the content, said Ms Sobko.

"If the authorities have a list of terror suspects, it can monitor these individuals and alert them if certain key words turn up on their social media channels," she said.

The use of social media by perpetrators of terror attacks has come under scrutiny following the Christchurch shootings last month, where the gunman live-streamed the attacks on two mosques and reportedly also shared links to white supremacist and anti-immigration postings on his social media platforms.

The increased need to secure public and crowded spaces has also become a priority, said Apstec Systems' chief operating officer Stephen Cooper, adding that the Cyprus-registered company's Human Security Radar aims to do just that.

The Human Security Radar, also on show at the exhibition, is an automatic walk-through system that mass screens people in real time for hidden explosives and firearms.

The Human Security Radar is an automatic walk-through system that mass screens people in real time for hidden explosives and firearms. ST PHOTO: TIMOTHY DAVID

It can scan over 6,000 people an hour and can be deployed at transport networks, shopping malls and even places of worship.

The system consists of broad pillars that flank the intended area and scan for materials commonly found in explosives. If detected, an alarm goes off and the authorities can stop the suspect.

"The challenge is providing a level of protection without causing delay to the flow of people," said Mr Cooper.

"This provides a seamless experience and has little or no impact on visitors. But it will deter terrorists."

It has been deployed in airports in the Middle East and Europe, and the company is currently in talks with Singapore authorities, he added.

Also featured at the exhibition are gadgets to secure Singapore's skies, such as the latest handheld anti-drone gun by local company TRD Singapore.

The Orion-T can take down unauthorised drones by cutting off their signal and it can also detect the exact location of the operator. "This makes it easy for law enforcement to apprehend the suspect," said TRD's managing director Sam Ong.

Anti-drone technology has come under the spotlight in recent months after drone sightings at airports in London and Germany caused travel delays and flight cancellations.

"Drones are useful, but it's only quite recently that people realise they can also pose a threat," said Mr Ong, adding that drones can be weaponised to launch attacks.

He said TRD's anti-drone technology is being used by local and international authorities. Other buyers include overseas celebrities who use it to protect their privacy.

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