Citrix Email Amnesia

In the world of lawsuits, many things have changed.  Obviously the most visible result is incredibly stupid warning labels like “Don’t stand on top of the ladder” or “Contents might be hot”.  The more insidious type of changes actually affect the productivity of companies.

The company policy I’m protesting against is automatic email deletion.  In fear of being demanded to provide email records, companies (including Citrix) have been forced to execute the only deterrent possible:  Delete the email after 60 days!  This policy was put in effect about 4 years ago inside Citrix.  The results are mostly negative.

Initially I saved my emails to a PST file.  Most of the engineers did this in the beginning.  Eventually they caught on and started to disallow PST files.  They (IT) made it so hard to circumvent the deletion that some people actually went to run Outlook locally to save their own PST files.  Being a remote worker I did not have this option.  At the time I had a fairly slow connection.

So, eventually I just accepted this policy and try to remember things after they have been deleted.  As you might realize, this is impossible especially considering the volume of email that I get.

Perhaps certain groups should be allowed to keep their emails.  I’m not sure engineers are going to write things that would cause lawsuits.  In fact, it is more likely that these emails could potentially help cases when it comes to how the technologies were created.  Or, it might help with patent applications.  The point is that the value of the email is high.

Since 2002 there have been many times I wish I could look back to answer questions.  It’s just gone.  All I can say is “I don’t know”.

The question is, is this common?  Is it the same where you work?  What do you think of this kind of policy?

Live near Brisbane, Australia. Software developer currently focused on iOS and Android. Avid Google Local Guide

Posted in Citrix Internal Issues
6 comments on “Citrix Email Amnesia
  1. Scott Barnwell says:

    Hi

    That is both interesting and surprising that you have such a policy in place. It is the first time I have heard of such a policy.

    I work for a bank in the UK and we archive all email for a period of 6 years. Our archiving server records all outgoing and incoming email regardless of whether a user decides to delete their email within Outlook. As you can imagine we have Terabytes of archived email data.

    An email can be restored from any employee (or ex-employee) within the last 6 years instantly.

    Scott

  2. hught says:

    I agree with Jeff. This is taking a sledgehammer to a nut, and missing the nut.

  3. Frederic Serriere says:

    Hi Jeff and everyone,

    I am pretty sure you are not alone protesting.. and indeed the workarounds are quite limited..

    As far I remember the policy – yeah, I’m supposed to know all of them correctly 😉 – also applies to files you may store on your profile and/or local drive… and you should use the dedicated rentention folders in Outlook…
    but guess what we discovered (‘we’ means my ex-team in the Dublin support centre) : our dedicated retention folder was just saving the folders created and not their contents !!!

    sure it will save on disk space… but not sure it is the correct thing as it is preventing employees to “access” all the information they have gathered in their years within the company…

  4. jeffreymuir says:

    It is interesting to learn that some companies actually try hard to preserve everything in email. I’m sure this could go too far but I would rather have too much instead of too little.

    I’m impressed that other Citrix employees feel the same way. I guess it makes sense that almost no one would prefer to have their email automatically deleted.

    It really doesn’t make sense to be so paranoid about lawsuits. Well, at least some thought should go into whether or not the consequences are worse than the lawsuits.

    It would be wonderful to see someone try to defend the current policy based on this kind of feedback.

  5. Martin says:

    Hi Jeff,

    i work for a public administration in germany.
    Contrary to you ( Citrix ) we use Lotus Domino where a DMS is running, so everyone can archive emails, correspondence or files within the DMS. Behind the DMS we use an optical library to archive content in a law conformal way…
    Furthermore we ( IT department ) use some kind of (helpdesk) library where we can store everything (software tools, documentation, answered questions and so on)…and the best part of that -> it’s freeware. There is a very nice site called openntf.org that holds freeware databases for Domino…

  6. Mamduh says:

    Hi,

    We have some users who have done archiving emails in citrix environment, next time when they logged on they all loast that archived folder any way to retrive that folder ? We have checked our citrix servers for any archive file but couldn’t found a single one.

    What is the best way to archive emails in Citrix environment?

    Thanks

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