Here’s why PDF/A validation is crucial for any archive

You want to make sure that PDF files that include business information are usable. Because PDF is an ISO standard, that means your PDF documents should be viewable and readable far into the future. However, you need to adhere to some best practices of interoperability to make sure that this happens.

You must validate the accuracy and legibility of your PDF files to make them accessible over time. There is an easy solution because PDF/A validation does precisely that.

What is PDF/A?

The PDF/A ISO standard outlines certain guidelines for the contents of PDF files and the processes used to create them. It excludes features that don’t allow for long-term viewability and readability. This includes encryption, non-embedded Fonts, external references for multimedia content, and 3D content.

Validating a PDF/A process or file means that you verify documents against what the PDF/A ISO standard outlines. You can feel confident that your files will be stored in your archive and be easily accessible for the long term once they’re validated.

PDF/A validation approaches

These are the best ways to make sure your PDF files are appropriately validated.

1. Foxit PDF Editor can be used to validate single PDF files. Foxit PDF Editor allows you to detect and fix issues and has PDF/A, PDF/E, and PDF/X compliance validation.

2. To validate large quantities of scans, you can use PDF Compressor. You can set up a process validation to automatically check for compliance with PDF/A if you are scanning at the enterprise level. After you’ve set it up and tested it with random samples, you can forget about it.

3. Establish a single entity that is responsible for validating all files. In Germany, where Foxit Volume Automation was born, this is precisely how it works. There are hundreds of savings banks, but just one service provider manages the central archive. The service provider is responsible for validating each PDF file received. (Contact us if you need resources to develop this type of validation solution.)

Remember that the purpose of an archive is to make your PDF files available for the future, even if it’s not yet ready. That’s what validation does. Without it, you could accidentally save bad PDFs, which means they may become unreadable, searchable, and otherwise unusable down the road. This is just one reason to use PDF/A for the best technical quality in your business documents today, and tomorrow.

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