Email Retention Standards


Indiana State University (ISU) strives to eliminate unnecessary electronic mail where possible.  This is a part of our institutional document retention/management environment. Due to the risk associated with sensitive data in email, this is also a critical part of our data security environment.


Standards and guidelines apply as noted to all faculty, staff, and educational or business affiliates of Indiana State University.


No email retention limit is formally imposed in ISU's email environment.  However, in order to meet the intent of our institutional document retention/management program, the following standard and associated practices are in place.

1.  Email retention tags are activated in ISU's email environment, and can be used to delete mail automatically.  Staff are encouraged to use a system of folders to store email by topic, and to apply retention tags to those folders in order to regularly and automatically delete emails that are not likely to be accessed past a certain "useful life."

2.  As part of our information security risk management practices:

a.  Each administrative department will be asked by the Office of Information Technology to define a maximum retention period for most email sent to employees in their unit.

b.  Staff in administrative departments and roles will be asked to set tags appropriately to delete email expeditiously, and certainly within the maximum retention period for their unit.

c.  The Office of Information Technology (OIT) will periodically perform risk assessments in administrative units.  Email retention practices will be reviewed and addressed as a part  of OIT's risk assessment protocols.

3.  Emails and/or email attachments which, based on their content, can be considered to be institutional records must be stored in appropriate long-term repositories (e.g. Sharepoint), and must not be retained in email.  Evaluation of practices related to this element will also be included in the institutional risk assessment protocols.


1. Faculty are strongly recommended to apply retention tags to delete email that is no longer needed, regularly and automatically.

2.  If an email needs to be stored for a significant period of time, it may be copied to several online repositories, including OneDrive, Sharepoint, and Teams.  See the Knowledge Base article entitled "How to Manage Email Retention" for detailed instructions on saving emails outside of Outlook.


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Article ID: 46433
Wed 1/17/18 2:58 PM
Thu 7/6/23 10:35 AM

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