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Retention and deletion of E-mail Correspondence


Simple e-mails carry no legal status at this time. Their use should therefore be limited to basic correspondence upon which no legal reliance is placed. At present, the law is still evolving with regard to e-mail, but current practice appears to be either to retain everything as a part of your organisation's activities, or retain nothing. In practice, organisations will wish to retain e-mails, as they nevertheless represent a record of genuine business correspondence, notwithstanding the fact that their validity in a court of law may be challenged.

However, the use of a Digital Signature is now legally enforceable in some countries, and any messages received using such signatures could be considered legally valid and hence enforceable. See Digital Signature for further information.

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