safeguard

noun
safe·​guard | \ ˈsāf-ˌgärd \

Definition of safeguard

 (Entry 1 of 2)

2a : a precautionary measure, stipulation, or device
b : a technical contrivance to prevent accident

safeguard

verb
safeguarded; safeguarding; safeguards

Definition of safeguard (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

1 : to provide a safeguard for
2 : to make safe : protect

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Synonyms & Antonyms for safeguard

Synonyms: Noun

aegis (also egis), ammunition, armor, buckler, cover, defense, guard, protection, screen, security, shield, wall, ward

Synonyms: Verb

bulwark, cover, defend, fence, fend, forfend, guard, keep, protect, screen, secure, shield, ward

Antonyms: Verb

assail, assault, attack

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Choose the Right Synonym for safeguard

Verb

defend, protect, shield, guard, safeguard mean to keep secure from danger or against attack. defend denotes warding off actual or threatened attack. defend the country protect implies the use of something (such as a covering) as a bar to the admission or impact of what may attack or injure. a hard hat to protect your head shield suggests protective intervention in imminent danger or actual attack. shielded her eyes from the sun with her hand guard implies protecting with vigilance and force against expected danger. White House entrances are well guarded safeguard implies taking precautionary protective measures against merely possible danger. our civil liberties must be safeguarded

Examples of safeguard in a Sentence

Noun

The new law has safeguards to protect the rights of citizens. There are many safeguards built into the system to prevent fraud.

Verb

laws that safeguard the rights of citizens You need to safeguard your computer against viruses. There are steps you can take to safeguard against identity theft.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

The path outlined by progressive trade analysts would create global labor standards, with decent wages and working conditions and health safeguards, adjusting for the level of development in a particular country. David Dayen, The New Republic, "The Inevitable Death of Global Trade As We Know It," 12 July 2018 The National Emergencies Act of 1976 adds various safeguards, one of which is a time limit to pronouncements of this nature. Newsweek, "Amazing Photos of Bioluminescent Phytoplankton," 14 Mar. 2018 Under Mr Bush’s steel safeguards, both neighbours were exempt. The Economist, "A tariffically bad ideaThe looming global trade war," 8 Mar. 2018 Hawaii apparently did not have adequate safeguards in place to prevent a false emergency alert about a missile attack that panicked residents for more than a half-hour before it was withdrawn, a federal official said on Sunday. David Shepardson, Anchorage Daily News, "FCC says appears Hawaii had no safeguard to stop missile scare," 14 Jan. 2018 Ecologists say that safeguards must be put in place to protect the wildlife ahead of any further development along the DMZ, which runs for some 160 miles across the peninsula and is on average about 2.5 miles wide. Andrew Jeong, WSJ, "If You Think North Korea Is a Wild Place, Check Out the DMZ," 3 Dec. 2018 Some have argued that the quest for thrilling footage led the team to take more extreme risks, without the safeguards or oversight that might have been imposed by a more conventional media organization. David Z. Morris, Fortune, "3YouTube Daredevils Dead in Waterfall Accident," 7 July 2018 An employee was fired, others disciplined and safeguards were put in place so these mistakes wouldn’t happen again. Steve Contorno, miamiherald, "New information shows deeper problems with bungled concealed-weapon background checks," 6 July 2018 The best systems balance capability with safeguards—making driving easier and less stressful in the right situations. Jonathan M. Gitlin, Ars Technica, "Consumer Reports agrees with Ars: GM Super Cruise beats Tesla Autopilot," 4 Oct. 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

The currency has drawn comparisons to bitcoin and cryptocurrency, the digital funds that use encryption methods to safeguard transactions without banks. Nadra Nittle, Vox, "This new would-be currency isn’t crypto — but is it for real?," 8 Nov. 2018 Eva Velasquez, president and chief executive at the Identity Theft Resource Center, advised parents who freeze a child’s credit file to carefully safeguard the PIN, and plan ahead for removing the freeze when the time comes. Ann Carrns, New York Times, "New Law Will Let Consumers ‘Freeze’ Credit Files Without Charge," 1 June 2018 But since the wine’s microbiome also has a huge effect on how a wine tastes, it may be used to safeguard against the effects of potential climate change. Elin Mccoy, Bloomberg.com, "Winemakers Turn to MIT to Save Pinot Noir in Warming Temperatures," 23 Jan. 2018 Residents were also urged to stay indoors to safeguard their lives and avoid confrontation with Honduran migrants. Ryan Dube, WSJ, "Mexico Beefs Up Its Southern Border to Face Raft of Migrants," 29 Oct. 2018 The Hueys are used to safeguard America’s intercontinental ballistic missile bases and to take key government leadership to safety, ensuring continuation of governance. Allison Barrie, Fox News, "Meet the new Air Force helicopters that can 'defy Armageddon'," 27 Sep. 2018 Poor folk—especially those of color—had to be warehoused in jails and rich folk had to be safeguarded their institutional sinecures. Maya Singer, Vogue, "Who's Up For Burning It All Down?," 6 Oct. 2018 The president routinely argues, in no uncertain terms, that the state should safeguard his personal interests. Eric Levitz, Daily Intelligencer, "Trumpism Is Having Its Best Week Ever," 10 May 2018 Privacy concerns will doubtless arise—over what data the sensors at Quayside will hoover up, who will own them, where they will be housed, how they will be safeguarded and so on. The Economist, "The world’s first neighbourhood built “from the internet up”," 2 May 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'safeguard.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of safeguard

Noun

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Verb

1501, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for safeguard

Noun

Middle English saufgarde, from Anglo-French, from sauf safe + garde guard

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Learn More about safeguard

Statistics for safeguard

Last Updated

6 Jan 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for safeguard

The first known use of safeguard was in the 15th century

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More Definitions for safeguard

safeguard

noun

English Language Learners Definition of safeguard

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: something that provides protection against possible loss, damage, etc.

safeguard

verb

English Language Learners Definition of safeguard (Entry 2 of 2)

: to make (someone or something) safe or secure

safeguard

noun
safe·​guard | \ ˈsāf-ˌgärd \

Kids Definition of safeguard

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: something that protects and gives safety Drink water as a safeguard against dehydration.

safeguard

verb
safeguarded; safeguarding

Kids Definition of safeguard (Entry 2 of 2)

: to make or keep safe or secure Refrigerating the food will safeguard it against spoilage.

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Comments on safeguard

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