security

noun
se·​cu·​ri·​ty | \ si-ˈkyu̇r-ə-tē How to pronounce security (audio) , -ˈkyər- \
plural securities

Essential Meaning of security

1 : the state of being protected or safe from harm We must insure our national security.
2 : things done to make people or places safe The college failed to provide adequate security on campus after dark. increased security at airports There was a lapse in security and the inmates escaped.
3 : the area in a place (such as an airport) where people are checked to make sure they are not carrying weapons or other illegal materials We have to go through security at the airport.

Full Definition of security

1 : the quality or state of being secure: such as
a : freedom from danger : safety
b : freedom from fear or anxiety
c : freedom from the prospect of being laid off job security
2a : something given, deposited, or pledged to make certain the fulfillment of an obligation
b : surety
3 : an instrument of investment in the form of a document (such as a stock certificate or bond) providing evidence of its ownership
4a : something that secures : protection
b(1) : measures taken to guard against espionage or sabotage, crime, attack, or escape
(2) : an organization or department whose task is security

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Examples of security in a Sentence

We must insure our national security. The college failed to provide adequate security on campus after dark. There was a lapse in security and the inmates escaped. We have to go through security at the airport. We called security when we found the door open. The meeting was held under tight security. The prisoner was being kept under maximum security. I like the security of knowing there will be someone there to help me when I need help. Growing up in a close family gave her a sense of security.
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Recent Examples on the Web For example, local leaders could favor them when deciding where to focus new housing, plant trees or establish food-security programs. Washington Post, 13 Oct. 2021 Bridge’s most devastating statistical analyst at the moment is probably Nicolas Hammond, who is both an accomplished player and an Internet-security consultant. David Owen, The New Yorker, 13 Oct. 2021 Whoever’s behind the mask has apparently learned how to hack home-security systems, updating the self-aware slasher series with 2021 gags. Zoe Haylock, Vulture, 12 Oct. 2021 The team should include representatives from information security, procurement and risk and compliance. Vince Arneja, Forbes, 12 Oct. 2021 Now a year into his sentence, Anwar is incarcerated at FCI Sheridan, a medium-security prison in northwest Oregon. Brendan I. Koerner, Wired, 12 Oct. 2021 Too many in this world have to worry about food security, housing and personal safety. Keith Pandolfi, The Enquirer, 12 Oct. 2021 This is the point of a collective-security arrangement. Jay Nordlinger, National Review, 11 Oct. 2021 Tough conditions have already put 14 million people—more than one-third of the Afghan population—in a food-security crisis, according to the U.N. Food and Agriculture Organization. WSJ, 10 Oct. 2021

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'security.' 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 security

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Time Traveler for security

Time Traveler

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

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Dictionary Entries Near security

securitize

security

security analysis

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Statistics for security

Last Updated

16 Oct 2021

Cite this Entry

“Security.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/security. Accessed 21 Oct. 2021.

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More Definitions for security

security

noun
se·​cu·​ri·​ty | \ si-ˈkyu̇r-ə-tē How to pronounce security (audio) \
plural securities

Kids Definition of security

1 : the state of being safe : safety national security
2 : freedom from worry or anxiety financial security
3 : something given as a pledge of payment He gave security for a loan.
4 : something (as a stock certificate) that is evidence of debt or ownership

security

noun
se·​cu·​ri·​ty | \ si-ˈkyu̇r-ət-ē How to pronounce security (audio) \
plural securities

Medical Definition of security

: freedom from fear or anxiety need for security dates back into infancy— K. C. Garrison

security

noun
se·​cur·​i·​ty | \ si-ˈkyu̇r-ə-tē How to pronounce security (audio) \
plural securities

Legal Definition of security

1a : something (as a mortgage or collateral) that is provided to make certain the fulfillment of an obligation used his property as security for a loan
b : surety — see also security for costs
2 : evidence of indebtedness, ownership, or the right to ownership specifically : evidence of investment in a common enterprise (as a corporation or partnership) made with the expectation of deriving a profit solely from the efforts of others who acquire control over the funds invested a security involves some form of investment contract — see also due diligence
asset-backed security
: a security (as a bond) that represents ownership in or is secured by a pool of assets (as loans or receivables) that have been securitized
bearer security
: a security (as a bearer bond) that is not registered and is payable to anyone in possession of it
certificated security \ sər-​ˈti-​fə-​ˌkā-​təd-​ \
: a security that belongs to or is divisible into a class or series of shares, participations, interests, or obligations, is a commonly recognized medium of investment, and is represented on an instrument payable to the bearer or a specified person or on an instrument registered on books by or on behalf of the issuer
convertible security
: a security (as a share of preferred stock) that the owner has the right to convert into a share or obligation of another class or series (as common stock)
debt security
: a security (as a bond) serving as evidence of the indebtedness of the issuer (as a government or corporation) to the owner
equity security
: a security (as a share of stock) serving as evidence of an ownership interest in the issuer also : one convertible to or serving as evidence of a right to purchase, sell, or subscribe to such a security
exempted security
: a security (as a government bond) exempt from particular requirements of the Securities and Exchange Commission (as those relating to registration on a security exchange)
fixed-income security
: a security (as a bond) that provides a fixed rate of return on an investment (as because of a fixed interest rate or dividend)
government security
: a security (as a Treasury bill) that is issued by a government, a government agency, or a corporation in which a government has a direct or indirect interest
hybrid security
: a security with characteristics of both an equity security and a debt security
mortgage-backed security
: a security that represents ownership in or is secured by a pool of mortgage obligations specifically : a pass-through security based on mortgage obligations
pass-through security
: a security representing an ownership interest in a pool of debt obligations from which payments of interest and principal pass from the debtor through an intermediary (as a bank) to the investor especially : one based on a pool of mortgage obligations guaranteed by a federal government agency — compare collateralized mortgage obligation, remic
registered security
1 : a security (as a registered bond) whose owner is registered on the books of the issuer
2 : a security that is to be offered for sale and for which a registration statement has been submitted
restricted security
: a security accompanied by restrictions on its free transfer or registration of transfer
shelf security
: a corporate security held for deferred issue in a shelf registration
Treasury security
: a security issued by a government treasury : treasury sense 3
uncertificated security \ ˌən-​sər-​ˈti-​fə-​ˌkā-​təd-​ \
: a security that belongs to or is divisible into a class or series of shares, participations, interests, or obligations, that is a commonly recognized medium of investment, that is not represented by an instrument, and the transfer of which is registered on books by or on behalf of the issuer
unregistered security
: a security for which a registration statement has not been filed
when-issued security
: a security traded on a conditional basis prior to its issue
3a : measures taken to guard against espionage or sabotage, crime, attack, or escape
b : an organization or department whose task is security

More from Merriam-Webster on security

Nglish: Translation of security for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of security for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about security

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