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You're exactly right in your interpretation. Indemnification is the act of being held not liable or being protected from costs by shifting them to another party - and they are enforceable!!
You don't want to sign one of these, or if you do, make sure you only agree to indemnify the client for any claims caused by your own actions, and not the actions of the client.
This basically nullifies the agreement because if you're ultimately liable, you're going to have to pay anyway, but if the client is responsible, you don't have to.