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Employee Email Management Policy

Purpose

It is the policy of Columbia College to protect the security, integrity and availability of emails and records created or maintained in the course of institutional operations, to retain emails and records in accordance with applicable laws and regulations, and to ensure that emails and records that are no longer needed or of no value are discarded at the appropriate time.  This policy provides guidance for the use and management of the Columbia College Microsoft Exchange email system provided by the College and used by College employees.  At all times employees are expected to use the email system in a responsible and lawful manner and consistent with this policy.

Scope

This Policy applies to all members of the College community who have access to College email and records, including, without limitation, individuals who are faculty, staff, contractors, consultants, temporary employees, volunteers, and affiliates of the College.

Policy

College employees are issued a Columbia College Microsoft email account and address to use for conducting College business and to assist in the performance of job duties and responsibilities.  This email account and address is the property of the College and by using the email system employees agree that there is no expectation of privacy and the College may access and review records and email accounts at its sole discretion.

Employees are responsible for archiving, retention, and deletion of all emails in their College email account and in any other accounts for which they are responsible. The email system can be used as an archive for records; however, department heads and supervisors are responsible for providing guidance to employees within their respective departments, including but not limited to how to properly maintain records and email messages. In general, users of the email system are advised to periodically check the contents of their email accounts and consider whether to retain or delete email account content.  Individual email account users are responsible for determining what email or record should be retained or deleted and for ensuring there is no applicable email or record retention obligation prior to deleting any email or other email account content (calendar appointments, contacts, etc.).

Email Retention Schedule

Default retention for records and emails stored within the email system is established on the following schedule:

  • Calendar entries are retained for a total of six (6) years. When the calendar item is one (1) year old, it will be moved to the online archive and will be retained for five (5) additional years.
  • Inbox email messages are retained for a total of six (6) years from the date of the message. When the message is one (1) year old, it will be moved to the online archive and will be retained for five (5) additional years from the date of the message.
  • Sent email messages are retained for a total of six (6) years from the date of the message. When the message is one (1) year old, it will be moved to the online archive and will be retained for five (5) years from the date of the message.
  • Deleted items are retained for thirty (30) days.
  • Conversation History is retained for thirty (30) days.
  • Email messages within user-created folders are retained for a total of six (6) years from the date of the message. When the message is one (1) year old, it will be moved to the online archive and will be retained for five (5) additional years from the date of the message.

There are certain circumstances when electronically stored information – including information from email accounts – must be retained, such as when a Legal Hold is issued by the Office of the General Counsel.  In these situations normal retention schedules will be suspended.  No employee who has been formally notified of a record preservation obligation may discard, destroy, alter, or delete a record that falls within the scope of that directive. Violation of the obligation may subject the individual to disciplinary action, up to and including dismissal, as well as personal liability for civil or criminal sanctions by courts or law enforcement agencies.

End of Employment with the College

When an employee ceases employment with the College for any reason, the access to the College email account and records will be terminated, generally on the last date of employment.

Getting Help

If you need help, please contact cchelpdesk@ccis.edu or call 1-800-231-2391 x4357. 

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