Secure Attachment File Encryption (SAFE): Frequently Asked Questions

What is Secure Attachment File Encryption (SAFE)?
SAFE is a service that allows UCOP employees to quickly, easily, and securely send large electronic files via a Web browser, rather than attaching them to an e-mail message. SAFE encrypts, uploads, and stores the files on a secure Web server and then sends the recipient an e-mail note with secure links to the materials. The service encrypts the file both in transit and on the SAFE server, thus ensuring the security of the file delivery. SAFE is used for file delivery; it is not a "file server" and cannot be used for file storage. Files may be sent to anyone in any organization, provided they have access to e-mail and the Internet.

Who will want to use SAFE?
Anyone who has a business need to

  • send large files that may be blocked due to size quotas on either the senders' or the recipients' e-mail systems, or
  • transmit files that contain confidential or protected information such as Social Security numbers or protected health information.

What are the requirements for using SAFE?
Your department must be incorporated into the UCOP centralized Active Directory (AD). This allows you to use your Active Directory credentials (a user name and password) to access the resources.

How do I sign up for SAFE?
Send an e-mail request to with "New SAFE Account Request" in the subject line. The ITS Service Desk will add your e-mail account to the SAFE service within three business days.

How do I install SAFE?
No installation is required on your part. You access the service by going to the SAFE Web site:

What happens to the file?
The attached file is kept on the SAFE server for fifteen days, after which it is automatically deleted. While a file remains on the server, it can be re-sent to the same recipient, or sent to other recipients as needed. Note: SAFE is used for file delivery; it is not a "file server" and cannot be used for file storage. Files should be saved by recipients, if they wish to retain them or need to modify them.

Is there a limit to the size of a file sent via SAFE?
Yes, but the size limit is very large-up to 20 GB. If you need to send a file that approaches the size limit, contact the ITS Service Desk before proceeding to discuss your options.

Can recipients modify and/or return a file?
Yes. To do so, the recipient must first download the file to the desktop. A recipient may use SAFE to securely send comments or edited versions of the file back to the sender.

How do people not affiliated with UCOP use SAFE?
When a UCOP user sends a file via SAFE to a recipient outside UCOP, the recipient also receives an automatically generated e-mail from SAFE with instructions on how to sign up for a "restricted sender account." After creating this account, the recipient can securely send comments or edited versions of the file back to anyone at UCOP.

Why don't I receive the verification code in my e-mail Inbox?
Check your e-mail spam filter or anti-spam device and make sure it allows e-mail from

Who should I contact for questions or problems with SAFE?
Contact the ITS Service Desk