SAF establishes Digital and Intelligence Service alongside Army, Navy and Air Force

The establishment of the DIS marks a key milestone in the transformation of the Next Generation SAF.

Liam Willett

Aspiring cat dad.

Published: 31 October 2022, 2:18 PM

The Singapore Armed Forces (SAF) has established its fourth service – the Digital Intelligence Service (DIS), alongside the existing Army, Navy and Air Force Services.

Inaugurated at a parade on Friday (Oct 28), DIS sees the consolidation and integration of existing Command, Control, Communications, Computers and Intelligence as well as cyber capabilities of the SAF.

As a dedicated Service, the DIS will raise, train and sustain digital forces and capabilities to defend the peace and security of Singapore from evolving and increasingly complex threats in the digital domain.

In her speech at the inauguration parade, President Halimah said: “In the past decade, we have witnessed many attacks on other countries, not through traditional armed conflicts, but through the digital realm. The impact of these digital attacks is real and can result in disruption of essential services, data theft and even local elections.”

DIS will thus enhance Singapore’s security by defending and dominating the digital domain. This allows the SAF to operate better as a networked and integrated force to deal with a wider spectrum of external threats to safeguard Singapore’s peace and sovereignty.


The design of the DIS crest represents its support for the full spectrum of operations and contributions to Singapore’s peace and sovereignty.


The DIS is led by the Chief of Digital and Intelligence Service, and supported by the Chief of Staff – Digital and Intelligence Staff and Chief Expert DIS. The DIS comprises a Service Headquarters, selected Joint and Cyber Staff departments, four Commands and a Digital Ops-Tech Centre.

There are currently three vocations under the Military Domain Expert Scheme (MDES), as well as other vocations under the Defence Executive Officer scheme (DXO) to attract and develop both military and non-uniformed digital experts to grow the digital workforce.

MDES vocations include the C4 Expert, Military Intelligence Expert and Digital and Intelligence Systems Engineer, while DXO vocations include Defence Cyber Experts and Defence Executive Officers.

The DIS will also leverage National Servicemen to develop its digital workforce. Operationally Ready National Servicemen with matching talents and relevant civilian expertise can express interest to serve in the DIS through the Enhanced Expertise Deployment Scheme. 

Full-time National Servicemen with suitable skills are offered to participate in two DIS-related Work-Learn Schemes (WLS) where they will undergo military training and serve NS while attaining academic credits which will contribute to the completion of a relevant university degree.

Pre-enlistees who enlist from April 2023 and are interested in Computer Science, Computer Engineering or data science and AI are welcome to apply for the Digital WLS. Over the course of the four-year scheme, the NSFs under the WLS – Digital Specialists (DigiSpecs) – will have opportunities to hone their skill sets through vocational and academic training in areas of data science, software development and AI. 

The DigiSpecs will serve in roles including data engineering, AI model experimentation and development, operational deployment of technologies, and User Experience and User Interface design to help meet the SAF’s increasing digitalisation needs.

All pre-enlistees interested in cybersecurity are welcome to apply for the Cyber WLS. During a three or four-year scheme, Cyber Specialists (CySpecs) will have opportunities to hone their skill sets through vocational and academic training to deal with advanced cyber threats, engage in real-world cybersecurity operations and contribute to the nation’s cyber ecosystem. 

The CySpecs serve in roles ranging from threat monitoring and assessment to cyber forensics, incident response, malware analysis and penetration testing to address wide-ranging cyber threats.

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