E-Mail Retention Policy
The Email Retention Policy is intended to help employees determine what information sent or received by
email should be retained and for how long. The information covered in these guidelines includes, but is not limited to, information that is either stored or shared via electronic mail or instant messaging technologies. All employees should familiarize themselves with the email retention topic areas that follow this introduction. Questions about the proper classification of a specific piece of information should be addressed to your manager. Questions about these guidelines should be addressed to Information Services.
This email retention policy is secondary to Western Oklahoma State College's compliance with the Freedom of Information Act and the Oklahoma Archives and Records Commission rules and regulations. Any email that contains information in the scope of daily activities should be treated in that manner. All Western Oklahoma State College email information is categorized
into four main classifications with retention guidelines:
Administrative Correspondence (3 years)
Fiscal Correspondence (1 year after all audits have been completed (generally 3 years))
General Correspondence (1 year)
Ephemeral Correspondence (Retain until read, destroy)
This policy covers the following campus personnel:
Financial Aid Full Time Personel
A. Administrative Correspondence
Western Oklahoma State College Administrative Correspondence includes, though is not limited to clarification of established company policy, including holidays, time card information, dress code, work place behavior and any legal issues such as intellectual property violations. All Incoming email to designated college officials will be transferred to a permanent storage medium and then backup tapes will be made and sent the off site storage location weekly. All email with the information sensitivity label Management Only or Administration only shall be treated as Administrative Correspondence. To ensure Administrative Correspondence is retained, a mailbox email@example.com has been created, if you copy (cc) this address when you send email, retention will be administered by the IT Department.
B. Fiscal Correspondence
Western Oklahoma State College Fiscal Correspondence is all information related to revenue and expense for the
company. All Incoming email to designated college officials will be transferred to a permanent storage medium and then backup tapes will be made and sent the off site storage location weekly. To ensure Fiscal Correspondence is retained, a mailbox firstname.lastname@example.org has been created, if you copy (cc) this address when you send email, retention will be administered by the IT Department.
C. General Correspondence
Western Oklahoma State College General Correspondence covers information that relates to customer interaction
and the operational decisions of the business. The individual employee is responsible for email retention of
D. Ephemeral Correspondence
Western Oklahoma State College Ephemeral Correspondence is by far the largest category and includes personal
email, requests for recommendations or review, email related to product development, updates and status
E. Instant Messenger Correspondence
Western Oklahoma State College Instant Messenger General Correspondence may be saved with logging function of
Instant Messenger, or copied into a file and saved. Instant Messenger conversations that are Administrative
or Fiscal in nature should be copied into an email message and sent to the appropriate email retention
F. Encrypted Communications
Western Oklahoma State College encrypted communications should be stored in a manner consistent with
Western Oklahoma State College Information Sensitivity Policy, but in general, information should be stored in a
G. Recovering Deleted Email via Backup Media
Western Oklahoma State College maintains backup tapes from the email server and once a quarter a set of tapes is
taken out of the rotation and they are moved offsite. No effort will be made to remove email from the
offsite backup tapes.
Any employee found to have violated this policy may be subject to disciplinary action, up to and including
termination of employment.
Terms and Definitions
Approved Electronic Mail
Includes all mail systems supported by the IT Support Team.
Approved Encrypted email and files
Techniques include the use of DES and PGP. DES encryption is available via many different public domain
packages on all platforms. PGP use within Western Oklahoma State College is done via a license. Please contact the
appropriate support organization if you require a license.
Approved Instant Messenger
The Jabber Secure IM Client is the only IM that is approved for use on Western Oklahoma State College computers.
Individual Access Controls
Individual Access Controls are methods of electronically protecting files from being accessed by people
other than those specifically designated by the owner. On UNIX/LINUX machines, this is accomplished by careful
use of the chmod command (use man chmod to find out more about it). On Mac's and PC's, this includes
using passwords on screensavers, such as Disklock.
Insecure Internet Links
Insecure Internet Links are all network links that originate from a locale or travel over lines that are not
totally under the control of <Company Name>.
Secure Western Oklahoma State College Sensitive information in accordance with the Acceptable Encryption Policy.
International issues regarding encryption are complex. Follow corporate guidelines on export controls on
cryptography, and consult your manager and/or corporate legal services for further guidance.
6. REVISION HISTORY