Many companies ask us how we keep their data in Formwork safe. That’s a very reasonable question because you’re entrusting us with very important data which essentially decides whether you pass your audits or not!
So, here’s a description how we keep your data safe.
First off, we don’t use US-based cloud providers. While everyone and their dog has their own unique opinion on whether using US cloud providers is okay for EU companies and whether US authorities can really access your data, we just opted to not be part of that discussion. Instead, we run Formwork on Scalingo, a French hosting company which, by the way, is profitable and not venture capital - funded (cool!).
The data in our SQL database is mirrored across three servers and backed up daily.
For object storage (i.e., your attachments and images), we use Scaleway. Data there is mirrored across three locations.
Is this safe? Yes. We’re literally storing everything in a redundant way.
Can this be improved? Certainly. In the future, we’ll be looking at mirroring SQL and object data across providers. Hardly anyone does that, but then again, hardly anyone builds eQMS systems which handle this sort of critical data.
What else can you do? Glad you asked - you can export your Formwork data any time. This is not only good if you ever want to move to another eQMS provider; I’d also encourage you to do so regularly just so you keep a backup of your eQMS data somewhere in your infrastructure, even if it’s only your local laptop!
This will guard against the worst-case scenarios of your internet connection going down, or all data centers in France burning down at the same time, or thermonuclear war. Let’s hope that none of those things happen, and even if they do, that they don’t happen while you’re sitting in an audit with a notified body. Still, even then, you can whip out your handy batch export and continue the audit with the exported PDFs and spreadsheets.
That’s it. Let me know if you have any further questions!