We would like to start cleaning up approx 1000 disabled email accounts (of employees who have left) on the Exchange server in order to free up space. I am wondering if anyone else has gone through this exercise and what steps were taken.
Yes, in theory, we should be reassigning the email account to someone else to look through it to see if there are any individual emails to save but...
Most of these disabled "orphaned" accounts are over a year old. Some are 5 years old. To open them up and go through the thousands of emails (even if we just limited it to the sent folder) will take much time. If each account had 100 emails to save, that translates into 10,000 emails that would have to be catalogued into the correct file code in either our EDMS or network drives. And realistically, how is someone else going to determine how many of the emails are official records and need to be kept? It will be very difficult. Is the effort worth it? We are going to be getting a legal and risk management opinion on this but I would like to do a bit of research on what others are doing (hence this email) before we approach them.
There is also the issue of pst files that could be connected to the Exchange accounts. We will have to try and locate them if they are not on the network drives. And if people locally cached email (in .ost files), those files may still be around on hardware (laptops, tablets) that have not yet been scrubbed.
By the way, on a day forward basis we will be writing a protocol on how to handle email accounts when an employee leaves. Hopefully that will prevent adding to the mess we currently have.
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