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What happens when an Office 365 subscription expires?

Gregg Keizer | July 12, 2017
Three-stage process eventually ends up with all cloud data deleted.


121 days and up: Deprovisioned

At the Day 121 mark, the Office 365 subscription is not only dead, it's really, really dead.

No one, administrators included, can access service or applications, so backing up employee data is impossible.

In fact, Microsoft will begin to delete the subscription's data from its servers starting on this date. The company does not provide a done-by deadline, saying, "You can expect data to be permanently deleted in a reasonable timeframe after the 120 days have elapsed." Enterprises that want data erased as soon as possible may request "expedited deprovisioning" by calling support. Microsoft will then delete the pertinent data within three days.

Global or billing admins may not restore a subscription -- and thus access to the cloud-based data and the Office applications -- during this period. Assuming the firm wants to continue using Office, it must purchase new Office 365 subscriptions or standalone, perpetual licenses.


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