What happen to shared files once user leaves the organization?

Brass Contributor



There is user a who shared some files with user B and user C. Then user left the organization and we deactivated userid in AD. What will happen in following scnerios

1. Are files  still accessible by user B and User C, if so how to handle this situations?

2. After deactivating the user in AD and also removed or disableed the O365 of user a, I believe files will not beb accessible?


Can anyone please explain what is the best approach to handle this situations?



5 Replies

Interesting question,  I have not tested this exact scenario and I can't see any official documentation about this but someone else might know for sure.  When you say deactivated, I assume that means they are blocked from signing into Office 365 but does that also mean their Office 365 licence has been removed as well?


Here is the guidance from Microsoft for dealing with staff leaving and the exact procedure - Remove a former employee from Office 365.  Here are the technical details of OneDrive for Business retention and deletion included managers automatically being prompted to access these files. 

My guess here is that once the ODFB is removed, the shared links will e also removed from the shared view of all the users to whom the former employee shared information with

Thanks for reply Juan, I also have same understanding, but did not found any documentation or article on this information.


But my concern, we are not immediately deactivating or disabling the ODB license, we are only deactivating AD account. In that case, others user can still access the shared information or not.

They can still access it. You can reduce the "retain deleted ODFB sites" setting duration to speed up the removal process, or manually remove permissions as needed.

Deactivating them in AD depending on sync will most likely delete them from office 365. If you do not have preservation turned on for OneDrive it’ll delete after I believe 30 days by default. If you have the setting to keep one drive user files for x amount of time set then the shared files will continue to function because the site doesn’t get touched only then access for that user gets removed but the content and other permissions on the site stay the same.