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What is validation?

In computer science, the term“validation” refers to a process of verification. This process ensures that data has been subjected to verification to ensure that it is both accurate and ready for use without concern. A validation process uses what are known as “routines”, which are known by a variety of names:

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  • Validation rules
  • Validation routines
  • Validation restrictions
[/su_list] These routines are used to check data that is entered into a system for security, correctness, and integrity. The rules can be implemented either through automated processes or by incorporating an explicit validation process.

General Information

The purpose of data validation is to ensure that different types of user input to an application or automated system are clearly defined and appropriate for those systems. Validation rules can be defined, designed, and used in different contexts using a variety of methods. For business applications, for example, data validation can be defined using specific data integrity rules or procedure-based business rules. Data that does not meet these requirements has a very negative impact on the execution of the respective business processes and should therefore be filtered and excluded as efficiently as possible.

Types of data validation

In the context of data validation, various generalizations regarding the complexity and purpose of validation can be defined as basics, such as:
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  • Validation of specific areas and restrictions
  • Cross-reference and code validation
  • Systematic data validation
[/su_list] A validation process is composed of two distinct steps, namely:
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  • Validation check
  • Verification Action
[/su_list] In the first validation step, one or more calculation rules are used to verify that the data at hand is valid. In the post-validation step, feedback is provided to support the validation process.

Validation criteria

Depending on the intended use of the data to be validated, various criteria can be determined for the validation process, such as the size of the file or the number of characters in a data element value. For example, an IBAN must have an exact number of characters to pass the validation process and be considered valid. Another validation criterion can be the format check. The data must conform to a certain format. For example, for the IBAN number, the first two characters (the country code) must be two letters and only certain combinations of letters are allowed.

Validation Process in Software Development

In addition to data validation, the validation process is also used in software quality assurance. In this context, validation refers to testing the suitability of a software product to its intended use. The validation process is based on a previously defined requirements profile and can be implemented from both a technical and a personnel perspective.

In the context of the so-called “V-model”, validation belongs to the acceptance tests. In this context, the validation process is understood as the verification of the suitability of the software product with the original requirements and goals of the customer. The following validation methods are used here:
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  • Re-testing with the customer to uncover ambiguities and erroneous assumptions.
  • Creation of prototypes as a basis for communication with the user
  • Incremental development of features for direct feedback from the customer



Why validation?

In theory, verification is for authentication, so it is proof of a property that the product claims to have. Validation is for referencing. In practice, however, validation is done by testing the extent to which the process is practical and feasible.

What does a validation engineer do?

The validation engineer's job is to provide this proof. For example, he prepares and performs tests of production processes, software or machines and evaluates them in a report of results.

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