Enabling a data retention policy in Front



Front's data retention feature allows companies to automatically delete conversations and contacts from Front on an ongoing basis. Data retention results in permanent deletion and the data cannot be recovered.

How it works

  • When enabled, conversations are moved to the trash automatically after a period of time set by your company.

  • The retention time starts from the timestamp of the last message or comment in the conversation.

  • Once in the trash, conversations are then permanently deleted after 7 days. 

  • Both shared and individual copies of the conversation are deleted.

  • If there are no longer any other messages from the contact in the deleted conversation, the contact record is also permanently deleted from Front. 

  • If you have a large amount of historical data in Front, it can take up to one month to process your historical data after the data retention feature is enabled.


Step 1

To enable data retention, click the gear icon on the top right of Front and into the Company settings tab.

Step 2

Select Preferences under the Company section, then click the Data retention tab.

Step 3

Specify the number of days you would like to retain inactive conversations in Front before moving them to the trash. Keep in mind that Front deletes conversations in the trash after 7 days, so consider this time as well when setting your retention policy.

For example, if you want to permanently delete conversations after 60 days, you might want to send conversations to the trash after 53 days to account for the time the conversation will sit in the trash before being purged. 

Three data retention preferences are available for you to enable:

  1. Automatically trash inactive conversations: Conversations will be trashed if there is no activity (such as commenting, assigning or tagging) after a defined inactivity period.

  2. Automatically delete trashed conversations: Trashed conversations will be permanently deleted after 7 days.

  3. Automatically delete unused contacts: When a conversation is permanently deleted by the data retention policy, all unused contacts in this conversation will also be permanently deleted (requires pref #2).

Step 4

Click Save, then you will be prompted with a confirmation modal. Type the word trash and click Save to confirm.


How does Front measure inactivity for data retention?

Data retention references the timestamp of the last message or comment in the conversation to determine inactivity. For example, suppose a data retention policy is set to 14 days, and the following conversation is stored in Front: 

Dec 1: Inbound message
Dec 5: Reply sent
Dec 6: Comment made
Dec 10: Message tagged and archived

In the example above, the conversation would be moved to the trash on Dec 20, 14 days after the last comment was made. If, however, on Dec 14, a new message came in, the counter would be reset and the conversation would not be sent to the trash until 14 days of inactivity had passed. 

What information is deleted as part of data retention?

The entire conversation, including messages and comments, is deleted. This includes personal copies of the conversation located in individual inboxes, in cases where individuals have been a participant in the conversation.

If, while deleting the conversation, there are no longer any other messages from the deleted contact in that conversation, the contact record is also permanently deleted from Front. 

Is the conversation recoverable once deleted?

No, data retention results in permanent deletion and conversations cannot be recovered. 


This feature is available on all plans.