Upload Contacts to Everbridge with SFTP

This post is inspired by the “Download Access Instructions” PDF listed in the “Secure FTP” area within Everbridge settings. Its use of the WinSCP client requires the conversion of the Everbridge supplied encryption key which many find complicating. The steps below use the widely popular and free FileZilla client which doesn’t require conversion, simplifying the process.

Create a Connection

  1. Go to Settings > Contacts and Groups > Secure FTP in manager.everbridge.net and click “Download” to save your organizations SFTP key. Take note of the keys file name and location.
  2. Download, install, and open the FileZilla client
  3. Go to File > Site Manager in FileZilla and create a new Everbridge SFTP connection
  4. Click “New Site” and name it “Everbridge”
    Protocol: Choose “SFTP – SSH File Transfer Protocol”
    Host: Found in Everbridge under Settings > Contacts and Groups > Secure FTP > Host
    Port: Leave this blank
    Login Type: Choose “Key file”
    User: Found in Everbridge under Settings > Information > Organization ID
    Key File: Browse to the key file you saved above
  5. Click “Connect” to save and open this new connection. That’s it. A successful connection will display folders titled, user, update, result, replace, etc. If it wasn’t successful, check the instructions again or read the “Noteworthy” section below.

 Test an Upload

Create a test file

  1. In Everbridge, select and download a test contact record, note the file location
  2. Open the contact’s record in Everbridge and give it a new, random middle initial.

Transfer the File

  1. In FileZilla, double click the “update” folder on the right-hand side.
  2. On the left-hand side, navigate to the contact file downloaded above, double click to transfer
  3. Check the contact record to confirm the middle initial changed back to the original value
  4. For transfer details, go to the “result” folder at the root level of the Everbridge FileZilla connection or take a look in the Everbridge Manager under Contacts > Uploads


  • SFTP is the only protocol Everbridge supports.
  • Be sure to look for SFTP or SSH File Transfer Protocol when choosing a transfer type within your chosen transfer client. Everbridge’s use of “Secure FTP” can be misleading. SFTP is not “secure ftp” or “FTPS” meaning FTP over SSL/TLS. SFTP is SSH File Transfer Protocol, meaning it uses SSH to move data.
  • If the instructions below DO NOT WORK, it could be that your organization has blocked outgoing FTP/SFTP. Exfiltration of data with FTP/SFTP is commonly blocked on corporate networks; for obvious reasons. If this is the case, engage IT or perform the instructions below at home or with your phone’s hotspot. You didn’t that from us.
  • If SFTP is blocked and IT can’t help, Sentworks Slingshot allows those with the ability to use Box (box.com) to securely send scheduled exports to Everbridge; among other features.

Best Practices

  • Never email encryption keys. Treat them like a password.
  • You can always generate a new key if you feel it’s been compromised or just to be safe, but if you do, it could break any scheduled SFTP job that is using the old key.