Does Outlook delete inactive accounts?

Answered by John Hunt

Outlook does delete inactive accounts if there is no activity for 12 months. This means that if you don’t use your email account for a year and don’t take any action to keep it active, Microsoft may delete your account. This policy is in place to ensure that inactive accounts are cleared out and to free up usernames for new users.

It’s important to note that this deletion process only happens if no one hacks into your account. If someone gains unauthorized access to your account, they could potentially use it and keep it active, preventing it from being deleted due to inactivity. However, it’s always recommended to secure your account with a strong password and enable two-factor authentication to minimize the risk of unauthorized access.

If you want to ensure that your account is not deleted, there are a few actions you can take. The simplest way is to regularly log in to your account and send or receive emails. This activity will keep your account active and prevent it from being flagged as inactive. Additionally, you can set up email forwarding to another active email account, so any incoming emails will be redirected and counted as activity on your account.

Another option is to periodically update your account settings or preferences. This can be as simple as changing your account picture or updating your personal information. Any changes made to your account will count as activity and help keep it active.

If you no longer use your account and want to ensure its deletion, you don’t need to take any action. After 12 months of inactivity, Microsoft will automatically delete the account. However, if you have any important emails or data stored in your account, make sure to back them up before the account is deleted. does have a policy of deleting inactive accounts after 12 months of inactivity. However, by regularly logging in, sending or receiving emails, or making updates to your account settings, you can keep your account active and prevent it from being deleted.