Exchange Archiving

Written by Gregg Ruais
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Many people have no idea how their company email systems work. One very popular misconception is that messages sent to and from work email accounts cannot be lawfully monitored, lest companies would be violating their employees' constitutional rights. On the contrary, most large companies have explicit policies that state the exact opposite. HR and authorized managers have the right to monitor emails and even perform unannounced audits.

Emails Are Permanent, Not Private

Another belief shared by many people is that once emails are deleted, all proof that those messages once existed has been destroyed. Most large companies, and many small ones, retain all emails that pass through their servers. This is a matter of risk management. Email is the most common form of communication in business today. The vast majority of important decisions are, at some point, conveyed through emails. Email archives are used to resolve disputes, investigate improper behavior, and even settle legal battles.

Clients, vendors, and employees all use email to send instructions, communicate problems, and relay financial data. Businesses cannot entrust their employees with the power to eliminate such significant communications. People could accidentally hit delete buttons, or in more severe cases, intentionally wipe out records. A function as important as retaining information cannot hinge on individuals always doing the right thing. This is why companies need archiving solutions and why all emails are permanent.

Some businesses have more sophisticated email backup systems than others, which explains why people at certain companies can get away with sending offensive emails on a daily basis while people different companies get fired after one offense. A basic archiving system might simply save files to memory, where they will never be viewed. A complex email storage system, on the other hand, ensures that corporate email policies are being upheld.

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