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Retreive email content from Exchange Message Tracking Center

Posted on 2010-11-24
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Last Modified: 2012-05-10
We have an employee that departed our employ on a bad note.  We're concerned that she emailed her external email a list of clients and other items that are in serious breach of her employment contract.
I've been called in to see if I can find a copy of everything she may have sent herself because she has meticulously cleaned out her Outlook mailbox, yet a message search clearly shows certain suspicious behaviour.

The emails in question are circled in the screenshot attached.  I want to know if i can find out the content of the message and what the attachments were.

All help will be greatly appreciated.
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Question by:Reece Dodds
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10 Comments
 
LVL 49

Expert Comment

by:Akhater
ID: 34209977
you cannot sorry exchange logs only the subject (if enabled) you can never have access to the content unless you have journaling enabled on your exchange server

when did she leave ? did she just delete items from outlook? is her mailbox still available ?
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LVL 7

Author Comment

by:Reece Dodds
ID: 34210001
damn it...   how can i check if i have journaling enabled (or turn it on for future (if this is a good idea))?
left on 20/09/2010.
deleted items from outlook, her archived .pst and emptied trash.   Our deleted mail retention policy is only for 7 days.
mailbox is still available.

I thought i might me in luck because this particular exchange server is a child to my exchange server, but... it is POPing all mail onto it and therefor no longer exists on my server either.
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LVL 7

Author Comment

by:Reece Dodds
ID: 34210006
the owners of the office in subject weren't suspicious of anything nasty until Monday this week.
So we may have missed the boat... but I really want to exhaust every avenue before i tell them that.
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LVL 49

Accepted Solution

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Akhater earned 500 total points
ID: 34210010
oh I thought we would still be in the retention period ....

a good thing to try (without a lot of hope though) is to exmerge her mailbox to pst it will recover everything possible maybe...

for journaling go to the mailbox database, right click properties to it you have "archive all inbound/outboud...."
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LVL 7

Author Comment

by:Reece Dodds
ID: 34210052
tried exmerge yesterday after scouring outlook and it's "recover deleted items".  no go.  :-(

any other suggestions?  

is journaling a bad thing for server performance and storage?
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LVL 49

Expert Comment

by:Akhater
ID: 34210061
no other suggestions sorry ...

for journaling it does eat storage (obviously) never had any serious performance issue with it though. but it is a most for most of my clients
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LVL 7

Author Comment

by:Reece Dodds
ID: 34210066
the one other hope i had, and already tried with no success was a "previous versions" search while exploring the exchange data folders (in particular the 'queues' folder).
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LVL 49

Expert Comment

by:Akhater
ID: 34210070
I'm really sorry I do understand how bad the situation should be ...

do you send emails directly or through smart host ? maybe a copy on the smart-host
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LVL 7

Author Comment

by:Reece Dodds
ID: 34210087
used to be directly until about 7 months ago.  We were having too many relay issues.  So we are now using a smart-host.  Which is unfortunately our ISP.

If it came down to it, after a lot of effor they could probably subpoena the seizure of the user's private mailbox based on reasonable suspicion, but I doubt it will go anywhere near that stage.
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LVL 7

Author Closing Comment

by:Reece Dodds
ID: 34210222
not quite the solution i was looking for, but good to know for future
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