safe·​keep·​ing | \ˈsāf-ˈkē-piŋ \

Definition of safekeeping 

1 : the act or process of preserving in safety

2 : the state of being preserved in safety

Keep scrolling for more

Examples of safekeeping in a Sentence

His will is in safekeeping with his lawyer. while she was away on business, the single mom entrusted her daughter into her in-laws' safekeeping

Recent Examples on the Web

Investors have been quick to forgive Facebook FB 0.20% for its lapses regarding the safekeeping of user data. Dan Gallagher, WSJ, "Facebook Investors May Be Too Quick to Forgive," 28 June 2018 All of them full of sympathy suddenly for the ghetto world of their traditional fathers now that the traditional fathers are filed for safekeeping in Beth Moses Memorial Park. Jeet Heer, The New Republic, "Philip Roth, the Mandarin Joker," 23 May 2018 The seven other dogs, all pit bull mixes, on the property, were removed for safekeeping. Lauren Pack, ajc, "Dog allegedly beaten with baseball bat is recovering," 2 July 2018 That night Robey and his wife put the briefcase under their mattress for safekeeping. Michael E. Ruane, Washington Post, "An aviation flop led to stamp-collecting history and made the ‘Inverted Jenny’ famous," 16 May 2018 George waited until his brother was asleep, then stashed the gun in his truck for safekeeping. Jessica Pressler, Daily Intelligencer, "The Tragic End to a Longtime Black-Car Driver’s Campaign Against Uber," 15 May 2018 Officers took the mower for safekeeping after arresting the man on an outstanding warrant. Everton Bailey Jr.,, "Tualatin man accused of killing his mom, injuring brother," 15 May 2018 The notebooks are in storage for safekeeping and only examined once every 10 years. Nina Siegal, New York Times, "Researchers Uncover Two Hidden Pages in Anne Frank’s Diary," 15 May 2018 When that doesn’t work, a second firefighter climbs all the way into the bin to reach the boy before the team hands him over to his mother for safekeeping. Megan Mccluskey, Time, "Determined Toddler Trapped Inside Claw Machine Game Had to Be Rescued by Firefighters," 11 May 2018

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

See More

First Known Use of safekeeping

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about safekeeping

Share safekeeping

Dictionary Entries near safekeeping



safe house





Statistics for safekeeping

Last Updated

17 Sep 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for safekeeping

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

See more words from the same century

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for safekeeping



Financial Definition of safekeeping

What It Is

Safekeeping is a term describing a financial institution's responsibility to keep clients' assets in a safe area.

How It Works

Let's say John Doe deposits $4,000 into his savings account at Bank XYZ. Bank XYZ has an obligation to keep John's $4,000 separate and apart from its own accounts that it uses to pay the bank employees and other expenses.

Similarly, John Doe's brokerage firm has a responsibility to keep the money in his account separate from the brokerage firm's own cash and house accounts.

Why It Matters

One of the fundamental purposes of the entire banking industry is safekeeping. That is, they provide people with a safe place to keep their money until they need it.

A safekeeping certificate is a document that proves that a person owns a security or a CD. American Depository Receipts (ADRs) are some of the most common forms of safekeeping certificates. Issued by U.S. banks, American Depository Receipts (ADRs) are certificates that represent shares of a foreign stock owned by the issuing bank. The foreign shares are usually held in custody overseas, but the certificates trade in the U.S. Through this system, a large number of foreign-based companies are actively traded on one of the three major U.S. equity markets (the NYSE, AMEX or Nasdaq).

Source: Investing Answers



English Language Learners Definition of safekeeping

: the act of keeping something safe

: the state of being kept safe


safe·​keep·​ing | \ˈsāf-ˈkē-piŋ \

Kids Definition of safekeeping

: the act of keeping safe : protection from danger or loss He gave me his watch for safekeeping while he went for a swim.

Keep scrolling for more

Comments on safekeeping

What made you want to look up safekeeping? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


to clear from alleged fault or guilt

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Difficult Vocab Quiz

  • the-education-of-achilles-eugne-delacroix
  • Which is a synonym of discomfit?
True or False

Test your knowledge - and maybe learn something along the way.

Dictionary Devil

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.


Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!