The short answer is yes, you can delete messages you have sent to other LinkedIn members through LinkedIn’s messaging platform. However, there are some limitations and things to keep in mind when deleting sent LinkedIn messages.
Overview of Deleting LinkedIn Messages
LinkedIn allows you to delete messages you have sent to your connections or other LinkedIn members. When you delete a sent message, it will be removed from your sent folder and the recipient’s inbox. The recipient will no longer be able to view the content of the deleted message.
However, deleting a sent message does not delete it from LinkedIn’s servers entirely. LinkedIn retains metadata about the communication, including the sender, recipient, date/time, and subject line. So while the content is deleted, LinkedIn still has a record of the communication taking place.
Also, if the recipient has already read the message before you deleted it, they will still have had access to the content. Deleting it only prevents access after the fact. There is no way to retroactively delete a message from the recipient’s view once they have read it.
How to Delete LinkedIn Sent Messages
Deleting your sent LinkedIn messages is a simple process:
- Go to the LinkedIn messaging page and select the “Sent” folder.
- Locate the message you want to delete and click on the dropdown menu (the three dots icon) next to the message.
- Select “Delete” from the dropdown menu.
- Confirm that you want to delete the message when prompted.
The message will now be removed from your sent folder and the recipient’s inbox. Repeat these steps to delete multiple sent messages.
Limitations on Deleting LinkedIn Messages
While you can delete most messages you have sent, there are some limitations:
- You can only delete messages for up to 30 days after sending them. After that, the delete option is no longer available.
- You cannot delete messages sent to groups. Only individually sent messages can be deleted.
- If you have notifications turned on, the recipient may still get a notification that you sent a message, even if you then delete it before they view it.
So in summary, focus on deleting messages soon after sending, only individual messages can be deleted, and recipients may still see a notification if you aren’t quick to delete.
Why Delete LinkedIn Messages?
There are a few main reasons you may want to delete messages you have sent on LinkedIn:
- Incorrect information – If you shared incorrect information or details with someone, deleting the message can prevent confusion.
- Change of circumstances – If something changes soon after sending a message that invalidates the content, it’s best to remove it.
- Poorly worded – If you realize the wording of your message was poor or unclear, deleting it can give you a fresh start.
- No longer relevant – If the message refers to something time-sensitive that is now in the past, it may no longer need to remain.
- Accidental send – If you send a message to the wrong person, deletion prevents unintended sharing of info.
Essentially if the content of the message is no longer valid, appropriate, or relevant for any reason, deleting it can prevent confusion or misunderstandings.
Does the Recipient Get Notified?
When you delete a sent message on LinkedIn, the recipient does not receive any notification that the message has been deleted. The message simply disappears from their inbox.
The only way the recipient would know the message was deleted is if they had already seen it, and then noticed later that it was no longer in their inbox. But there is no proactive notification to them that a deletion took place.
So deleting LinkedIn messages can be done discretely without alerting the recipient provided they had not already viewed the message.
Is the Deletion Instant?
Deleting a LinkedIn sent message removes it from the recipient’s inbox immediately in most cases. However, there can be some rare delays.
If the recipient currently has the LinkedIn messaging window open on their device, the deleted message may not disappear from their view until they refresh or close and reopen the window.
But typically you can expect deletion to be reflected for the recipient within seconds of you deleting the message from your sent folder.
Can You Recover a Deleted Message?
Unfortunately, there is no build-in way to recover a deleted sent message on LinkedIn. Since the content of the message is removed from LinkedIn’s servers, the only way to recover it would be if you had a saved copy outside of LinkedIn before deletion.
For this reason, it’s recommended you be absolutely certain you want to permanently delete a message before doing so. Recovering deleted messages is generally not possible through LinkedIn.
Does Deleting Messages Reduce LinkedIn Storage?
Deleting your LinkedIn sent messages can slightly reduce the storage space being used by your account. However, the impact is usually negligible given the small size of typical messages.
Text-only messages without attachments take up very little storage space. And even with attachments, LinkedIn messages are small compared to storage used for profiles, posts, images, etc.
So while deletion does eliminate that data from storage, you likely will not notice a significant storage space improvement from removing sent messages alone.
Is There a Limit to How Many Messages You Can Delete?
LinkedIn does not impose any specific limit on the number of sent messages a user can delete. You are able delete any and all messages from your sent folder provided they meet the criteria covered earlier, such as being less than 30 days old.
The only limiting factor is that you can only delete messages one at a time through the standard interface. But there is no rule against deleting any quantity of messages.
Can You Delete Messages Sent to You?
Unfortunately, you cannot delete messages that other LinkedIn members have sent to you. Only the original sender of a message has the ability to delete that message.
As the message recipient, you can archive or hide messages sent to you so that they no longer appear in your main inbox. But you cannot fully delete them, only the sender can do that.
Are There Any Alternatives to Deleting?
Instead of deleting a sent message, you do have a couple options:
- Edit the message – You can edit a sent message to fix any errors or update outdated information rather than deleting entirely.
- Send a follow-up – Have a new message that clarifies or builds on the original if deletion is not necessary.
- Archive the message – Rather than deleting, you can archive messages to store them outside your inbox.
In some cases, these alternatives may be better options compared to permanent deletion. But when in doubt, deletion does fully remove content from both sender and recipient inboxes.
Can LinkedIn Revive Deleted Messages?
While LinkedIn retains some metadata about deleted messages, the content and attachments are removed from their servers. As a result, LinkedIn is typically unable to restore or undelete messages after a user has deleted them.
The only potential exception would be if you deleted the message very recently, as there may be a short grace period where restoration is possible on LinkedIn’s backend. But this would be extremely rare.
So once again, it’s crucial to be sure you want a message permanently gone before hitting delete. There are no guarantees LinkedIn can bring it back after deletion.
Is it Possible to Auto-Delete Old Messages?
LinkedIn does not have a built-in feature to automatically delete old sent messages after a specified period of time. The only way to delete is manually, message by message.
You can choose to archive older messages to clear them from your main inbox view. But full deletion requires individually selecting each message you want removed.
Some third-party tools and browser extensions promise to enable auto-deletion of LinkedIn messages after certain aging criteria. However, use caution as these tools can access and delete more messages than intended if not carefully configured.
Does Deleting Messages Improve Privacy?
Deleting sent LinkedIn messages can provide some improvement to privacy by removing content and information from the platform entirely. However, it depends on the nature of the messages.
Casual conversational messages tend not to have highly sensitive information in them compared to other LinkedIn data like profiles. So deletion may only provide minor privacy enhancements in some cases.
But for any messages containing personal details, confidential business information, or other private content, deletion can more significantly improve privacy by eliminating copies from your account and the recipient’s account.
What About Legal Implications?
Be thoughtful about any legal concerns before deleting LinkedIn messages, especially for business users.Removing messages relevant to ongoing legal matters or investigations can have consequences.
Messages related to employee disputes, harassment claims, government inquiries, or other issues may need to be preserved. Deletion could potentially constitute destruction of evidence or information.
Consult any compliance or legal advisor before deleting LinkedIn messages in high-risk situations. Don’t assume you can just delete any message without potential implications.
Can You Delete on Mobile Apps?
LinkedIn’s mobile apps for iOS and Android also allow you to delete sent messages right from your mobile device. The process is similar:
- Open the LinkedIn app and tap “Messaging” on the bottom nav bar.
- Select the “Sent” tab to view your sent messages.
- Swipe left on a message and tap the red trash icon to delete it.
- Confirm deletion in the pop-up prompt.
This provides a handy way to manage message deletion even when not in front of your desktop. The same limitations apply on mobile as on desktop sites.
What About Third-Party LinkedIn Apps?
Some third-party apps that connect to LinkedIn also give you access to your LinkedIn messages. Features related to deleting messages can vary across apps.
Typically, the native LinkedIn interfaces on desktop and mobile provide the most direct and reliable way to permanently delete sent messages. Third-party functionality may be more limited.
Review the help documentation for any third-party apps to understand their capabilities and limitations regarding deleting LinkedIn messages.
Deleting LinkedIn messages you have sent is definitely possible, with the only major limitation being the 30 day window to delete after sending. Take care when deleting as recovery of messages is difficult to impossible.
Be thoughtful about the implications of deleting messages, and consider alternatives like editing, clarifying with a new message, or archiving in some cases. But overall, know that deleting messages is an option to remove unwanted communication.