U of T 30-day Microsoft Teams Chat Retention Policy coming September 16

Date: May 29, 2024
To: InfoTech listserv, AMS listserv, EITU, MTAC
From: Enterprise Applications & Solutions Integration
Re:  U of T 30-day Microsoft Teams Chat Retention Policy coming September 16 

Dear colleagues,

As an important element in records management and data security, the University of Toronto will be implementing a 30-day retention policy for all individual Teams chat messages that occur outside of a designated Microsoft Teams Channel. This policy will take effect September 16, 2024. The policy is designed to enhance data security and promote efficient communication practices within the university.

What messages are impacted? 
Individual Teams chat messages are ephemeral, one-on-one communications, similar to a phone call or in-person conversation with a colleague, that are intended to disappear after the communication. Messages within group chats (including meetings) are also considered one-on-one communications and will follow the 30-day retention policy.

What messages are not impacted? 
Chat messages within a designated Teams channel that are directly related to a project, group or committee are intended to serve as a record for the entire team and will not be impacted by this policy.

Next steps 
We are giving all faculty, staff, librarians and students advance notice along with the opportunity to review their chat history in case they have any important links or files that need to be retrieved and kept. Moving forward, if users feel there are chats that are pertinent to projects or other teams, it is recommended to initiate these conversations and share these links within a specific Microsoft Teams channel. Staff, faculty and librarians may also want to consider reverting to email for pertinent conversations and information rather than Microsoft Teams chat.


  • To learn more about this university-wide effort to enhance data security and data management, please visit our Teams chat retention web page.
  • Please refer to the knowledge base article to learn more about the Teams Chat Retention Policy implementation.
  • Information sessions: We invite you to join our Connect+Learn sessions where we will provide an overview of the 30-day Teams Chat Retention Policy and an opportunity to ask questions.
    • Teams Chat Retention Information Session 01 – June 12, 11 a.m. Add to Calendar
    • Teams Chat Retention Information Session 02 – June 19, 11 a.m. Add to Calendar
  • If you have questions regarding this policy, please feel free to contact the support team.

Thank you for your attention to this matter. We appreciate your understanding as we work to enhance security, promote efficient communication practices and adhere to industry standards.

Kind regards,

Enterprise Applications & Solutions Integration (EASI)
Information Technology Services, University of Toronto
215 Huron Street, Toronto
Ontario M5S 1A2