Singapore is Getting Safer: Overall Crime Trend is Improving
In general, Singapore has become a safer place over time. For example, the crime rate has decreased by 15% on the island in the last decade, which is a very positive sign for residents. However, crime rates vary greatly by neighbourhood. How does your neighbourhood compare to others in terms of safety?
5 Safest Neighbourhoods
To help you determine the relative safety of your neighbourhood we compiled and analysed 5 years of the most recent crime data available, and ranked neighbourhoods based on the most recent data for total number of crimes reported. The types of crimes included in our analysis include robbery, housebreaking, snatch theft, motor vehicle theft, and unlicensed moneylending and unlicensed moneylending harassment.
According to our analysis, the safest 5 neighbourhoods in Singapore were Bukit Timah, Bishan, Kampong Java, Marine Parade, and Sembawang. These neighbourhoods are all centrally located, aside from Sembawang. Additionally, they were all frequently among the top 5 safest neighbourhoods each year.
1. Bukit Timah
Bukit Timah is a great place to live due to the low levels of crime in the area. The neighbourhood had the lowest number of crimes reported from 2012 to 2016 and did not have a single robbery or snatch theft reported in 2016. Furthermore, Bukit Timah has become increasingly safer in recent years, with total number of crimes declining 43% from 2012 to 2016.
Bishan is another very safe neighbourhood of Singapore. For example, there were no reports of snatch theft or unlicensed moneylending in 2016. Additionally, its proximity to parks and the central business district make this a very attractive neighbourhood for residents.
3. Kampong Java
The Kampong Java neighbourhood has become significantly safer in recent years, making it now one of the safest neighbourhoods in Singapore. From 2014 to 2016, crime in the area dropped by 38%. Robberies and house break-ins decreased from 15 and 13 cases in 2013 to 2 and 3 cases in 2016, respectively. Car owners can also enjoy peace of mind as there was just one incident of car theft in 2016, down from 17 in 2012.
4. Marine Parade
Marine Parade is also a very safe neighbourhood. During the 5 years from 2012 to 2016, Marine Parade experienced an average of 106 crimes per year, while the average neighbourhood reported approximately 260 crimes annually.
Sembawang, which is one of the more affordable neighbourhoods in Singapore is also a very safe area. This northern neighbourhood experienced no robberies or snatch thefts and just one car theft in 2016.
5 Neighbourhoods with the Most Crimes Reported
While the average number of crimes reported decreased in nearly every neighbourhood in Singapore, some neighbourhoods remain more prone to criminal activities than others. We found that the most crimes were reported in Yishun North, Nanyang, Jurong West, Tampines and Woodlands East. Additionally, we found that the neighbourhoods with the most amount of crime tended to remain in the top 5 for crimes reported from year to year.
1. Yishun North
In 2016, Yishun North recorded the highest number of crimes in Singapore. The neighbourhood only had 1 reported robbery and 1 incident of snatch theft; however, it was plagued by loan sharks. In 2016, Yishun North had the highest number of moneylending harassment cases, with 232 reported in the area.
The Nanyang ward experienced the second most crime from 2012 through 2016. In particular, the neighbourhood had the most reported cases of unlicensed money lending, with 76 reported in 2016. Additionally, there were more cases of outrage of modesty reported in Nanyang (46) than most other areas in Singapore. With that said, the positive news is that crime has decreased by 61% in Nanyang following a spike in reported crimes in 2013.
3. Jurong West
Jurong West also struggled with crime in recent years. In 2016, the area had 49 cases of outrage of modesty and 8 housebreak-ins. However, the data suggests that there is some reason to be optimistic as crime in the neighbourhood has declined in every year since 2010.
Tampines has also experienced more crime than most neighbourhoods in Singapore. For example, it had the second most snatch thefts (6), third most robberies (7) and 3 most unlicensed moneylending harassment cases (186) in 2016. It also averaged the third most car thefts from 2012 to 2016 with 17.8 per year.
5. Woodlands East
Despite having just one robbery and 2 house break-ins in 2016, Woodlands East has the fourth most crime reported among neighbourhoods in Singapore. This is because the area is particularly burdened by moneylending harassment (185 cases in 2016) and car theft (9 cases reported in 2016).
Safest Neighbourhoods in Singapore
|Rank||Neighbourhood||Number of Crimes 2016||Average Number of Crimes (2012 - 2016)|
|11||Bukit Merah West||125||212.2|
|14||Ang Mo Kio South||134||233.6|
|17||Bukit Merah East||140||260.8|
|22||Ang Mo Kio North||178||283.6|
|30||Choa Chu Kang||245||385.6|
In order to determine the safest neighbourhoods within Singapore, our analysis relied on crime data recorded by Neighbourhood Police Centres and compiled by the Singapore Police Force. Our neighbourhood rankings take into account a wide range of crimes including robbery, housebreaking, snatch theft, motor vehicle theft, unlicensed moneylending and unlicensed moneylending harassment.
There are a few limitations with the available data. First, it does not allow for simple population or geographic area standardisation. This required our study to be based on the total number of crimes committed in each planning area, rather than crime per person or per square meter of area. Still, the data gives a sense of how likely it is to encounter a crime in each neighbourhood.
Singapore Police Force:
- Compilation of Unlicensed Moneylending (UML) Cases & Harassment (2012 - 2016)
- Compilation of Five Preventable Crimes (5Ps) (2012 - 2016)
- Crime Cases Recorded, Annual (2012 - 2016)