Guide to Slack import and export tools

Here’s what you need to know about how content may be accessed using Slack’s import and export tools. For plan-specific details, jump to Import and export tools by plan below.


Export overview

As with other workplace tools, Slack customers may need — or be legally compelled — to export content. But they can do so only under limited circumstances. Employment, privacy, and other laws, as well as corporate policies, limit the use of these exports. Laws and policies may also require employers to notify employees of their use of export tools.

Here are a few examples where a customer may need to export content:

  • A company receives a report of harassment or theft of trade secrets and needs to conduct a workplace investigation.
  • A financial services company is required by a regulation to archive certain communications for a set period of time.
  • A court order mandates information from Slack must be disclosed due to a lawsuit or investigation.
  • A former employee requests to be provided with a copy of the information their former employer retained about them, as required by the EU’s General Data Protection Regulation.

Our export tools help customers comply with their obligations. These tools, and their requirements for use, help keep Slack a safe and secure place for getting work done.

Note: The content available for export may be limited depending on your plan and data retention settings. Visit Customize message and file retention policies for more information.

 

Import and export tools by plan

Free or Standard plan

  • Import: You can use the import tool to pull content from one of these sources: another Slack workspace, a CSV or text file, or data that has been exported from third-party apps (HipChat, Flowdock, Campfire, Chatwork, or others).

  • Export: Workspace Owners must contact Slack and apply to export content from private channels and direct/group messages. We will reject applications, unless Workspace Owners show in each instance (a) valid legal process, or (b) consent of members, or (c) a requirement or right under applicable laws in order to export data. 

    Workspace Owners and Admins may also use Standard Export to export content from public channels only. Standard Exports will include links to files, but not files themselves.

Plus plan

  • Import: You can use the import tool to pull content from one of these sources: another Slack workspace, a CSV or text file, or data that has been exported from third-party apps (HipChat, Flowdock, Campfire, Chatwork, or others).

  • Export: Workspace Owners can apply to access Corporate Export, a self-serve export tool that permits a Workspace Owner to export content from private channels and direct/group messages as needed and permitted by law. Each Workspace Owner must ensure that (a) appropriate employment agreements and corporate policies have been implemented, and (b) all use of Corporate Export is permitted under applicable law.

    On May 25, 2018 we discontinued the Compliance Export tool and replaced it with Corporate Export. Workspaces that previously had Compliance Export enabled maintain the ability to export workspace content through Corporate Export.

    Workspace Owners and Admins may also use Standard Export to export content from public channels only. Standard Exports will include links to files, but not files themselves.

Note: If your application to use Corporate Export is approved and you've enabled the tool, the option to use Standard Export (to export only public channel data) won't be available.

 

Enterprise Grid plan

  • Import: You can use the import tool to pull content from one of these sources: another Slack workspace, a CSV or text file, or data that has been exported from third-party apps (HipChat, Flowdock, Campfire, Chatwork, or others).

  • Export: At the organization level, the Discovery API export mechanism is available to Org Owners, allowing customers to use approved third-party apps to export, archive, or meet other security and compliance obligations for any organization content. Each Org Owner must ensure that (a) appropriate employment agreements and corporate policies have been implemented, and (b) all use of the Discovery APIs is permitted under applicable law.

    Exports through the Discovery APIs can include files (PDFs, JPGs, etc.), not just links to files. The Discovery APIs also support eDiscovery and data loss prevention (DLP) solutions that enable customers managing sensitive or regulated data to meet their obligations through routine exports and other management of protected data.

    At the workspace level, individual Workspace Owners and Admins may also use Standard Export to export content from public channels only.

Tip: Visit Roles and permissions in Slack for details on the different types of workspace roles. If you have a Slack account, go to the Workspace Settings tab on the Account page for contact information of the Owner(s) and Admin(s) for your workspace.


Compare export options

Compare all export features and functionality (effective May 25, 2018):

 

Standard Export

Available to all Workspace Owners and Admins

Corporate
Export

Available to Workspace Owners under limited circumstances


Discovery API

Available to Org Owners

Public channel content
Includes messages, links to files, message edit and deletion logs, and archived public channels
Direct/group message content*
Includes messages and links to files
 
Private channel content*
Includes messages and links to files
 
eDiscovery and DLP functionality
Includes query, access, message edit and deletion logs, and files (not just links to files) through approved third-party apps
    ✓ 


* Workspace Owners on the Free and Standard plans must contact Slack and apply to export content from private channels and direct/group messages. We will reject applications, unless Workspace Owners show in each instance (a) valid legal process, or (b) consent of members, or (c) a requirement or right under applicable laws in order to export data.

Questions? Please contact us at feedback@slack.com.

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