Zoom Cloud Recording Retention Policy


Zoom’s video conferencing capabilities have allowed us to work remotely and still foster connections with our colleagues and students through the ability to meet virtually. Zoom allows us to record meetings and save a recording to either Zoom’s cloud storage or locally on the meeting host’s computer. This document provides guidance on recordings and prescribes a retention period for those stored in the cloud.


At Duke, Zoom’s cloud storage is not intended to be a long-term solution for meeting recordings. Recordings may be retained according to the retention guidelines below. Duke users have storage alternatives including their local computer or other Duke services such as Panopto.

Retention Guidelines

Recordings are stored in the account of the user who creates the Zoom meeting and is subject to that user’s affiliation group described below. Verify affiliation group. In support of this policy, the following retention guidelines are established:

  • Duke faculty including Duke Kunshan University faculty, and emeriti – Cloud recordings in Zoom will be deleted five years after being recorded, based on primary Duke affiliation. This retention period acknowledges the value of academically related recordings and the potential need to share those recordings throughout the year. Faculty are strongly encouraged to enable the import of Zoom meeting recordings in Panopto and/or to use Clean My Zoom to move and delete recordings that are no longer needed (details above). Please note: No faculty recordings will be deleted until the summer of 2023 since Duke’s oldest Zoom recordings are from the fall of 2018.
  • Duke staff and students (graduate students, affiliates, sponsored guests) – Cloud recordings will be deleted 180 days after being recorded.

Important! Users -- including teaching assistants and other instructors -- whose primary affiliation is not “faculty” are subject to the 180-day retention policy. Likewise, administrative staff who may assist faculty in scheduling recording are subject to the 180-day retention policy. To avoid potential loss of an academically related recording, users should move recordings out of Zoom within 180 days of the creation date.


Prior to a recording being deleted in Zoom in accordance with the administration of this policy (moved to the trash), affected users will receive email notifications as follows:

  • 30 days in advance – An OIT-generated email based on the recording’s creation date
  • Seven days in advance - A Zoom-generated email based on the user’s affiliation group retention period assigned in Zoom and tied to faculty, staff, and student status in Duke’s administrative systems. Verify affiliation group.

After 30 days in the trash, Zoom will automatically and permanently expunge a recording. However, During the 30 days in the trash, users may recover a deleted recording. Once recovered, the recording should be moved to Panopto or another location within 24 hours or the recording will be sent back to the trash and deleted 30 days after it was originally moved to the trash.

Recording Guidelines

To manage our Zoom cloud storage capacity and help ensure the safe storage of and access to recorded meetings and classes, the following guidelines are set forth. These guidelines are subject to change as needed. When recording meetings or classes:

  • Do not record if the session involves clinical or electronic protected health information
  • Record only if there is a compelling reason to do so (for example, for future viewing by students of a class or to compile meeting minutes)
  • Before starting to record, inform meeting participants. State the reason for recording (e.g., future student viewing, to validate answers, etc.) and advise attendees that by remaining in the meeting, they consent to be recorded. Consider enabling the recording setting Show a disclaimer to participants when a recording starts
  • Retain the recording for the shortest period necessary and delete it when it is no longer needed
  • Enable Panopto's meeting import settings to store your Zoom recordings. Panopto will automatically import your Zoom recordings and delete them from Zoom
  • To share or stream recordings, use Panopto
  • Regularly review and move or delete cloud recordings from Zoom. Duke’s Clean Your Zoom tool allows you to move or delete recordings en masse. Using the tool, you can move your recordings to a personal folder on Duke’s network-attached storage


Phones & Conferencing