Employee Email

When using email to conduct official university business, employees must use USC email exclusively.

Email is defined as any electronic message residing in any of the default folders in any of the university’s email systems for employees, including those maintained by schools or units. Default folders refer to the following auto-generated email folders: Inbox, Drafts, Sent Items, Junk Email, Notes, Clutter, Deleted Items, etc. Email includes any subfolder located within a default folder. Electronic messages residing in top-level personal folders—i.e., folders created by the user and located at the same level as the Inbox—are considered documents.

Email retention

  • The university will retain email and attachments in default folders for 16 months after messages are received, sent, or created (in the case of the Drafts folder).
  • All email and attachments remaining in the university’s email default folders longer than 16 months will be automatically and permanently deleted.
  • Employees have the ability to save messages before the 16-month period expires by transferring them to a top-level personal folder.
  • Authors and recipients of email are responsible for identifying and saving documents that must be retained to comply with federal, state, or local laws, university policies or directives, or any other reason, before the 16-month period expires.

Email forwarding

Administrators of university email systems must disable automatic forwarding of email from USC-managed accounts to non-USC email accounts.

Responsible office

(213) 740-5555

Issued by

Michael Quick, Provost and Senior Vice President, Academic Affairs
Todd R. Dickey, Senior Vice President, Administration
University of Southern California