We have an inbound integration setup between an external system and Marketing Cloud. We are receiving daily files on External FTP directory which are loaded in data extensions.

The problem is I am not able to find any option to delete those file automatically after they are read by the Import Activity. And all these files are getting piled up on the External FTP server.

Is there a way I can automate the deletion of those files?

  • You have unlimited data in marketing cloud, where's the worry ;)
    – Francis
    Commented May 13, 2016 at 23:17
  • I corrected my question. Its not enhanced FTP. It is external FTP. I wish SFMC had some option to delete the files after they are read
    – Maneesh
    Commented May 14, 2016 at 23:24
  • Any suggestions ?
    – Maneesh
    Commented May 16, 2016 at 14:25

2 Answers 2


We're looking at deletion as part of controlling sensitive data on the SFTP. Do you have access to a safehouse as a file transfer solution? If not, you may need to create one (thanks Eliot Harper for the writeup)

If so, you can add a step to the end of your import automation workflow to move to the Safehouse. Files within a safehouse have a 21 day retention policy applied to them.

TL;DR: Move the files to a safehouse where they'll be deleted after 21 days.

Details on safehouses: https://help.salesforce.com/articleView?id=mc_overview_file_locations.htm&type=5

Creating a Safehouse:

The Safehouse file location is not created by default. If you do not have this in Email app > Admin > Data Management > File Locations, create one named 'Safehouse' and set the Location Type to 'Safehouse'.

SFMC Safehouse Retention Policy

Creating a safehouse location allows you to import decrypted files into the Salesforce Marketing Cloud without them being exposed in the Enhanced FTP Site Import directory. Only authenticated users can access safehouse locations, which reside on highly redundant, highly available central storage servers. Data retention policies default to retaining files for 21 days before deletion.


regarding this issue. I was able to call salesforce have a functionality called "data extract" enabled.

I have added this to the "automation" that helps me delete the file after the data is taken from SFTP.

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