account number

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account number

The number assigned to an employee, customer, vendor or product for identification. Although it may contain only numeric digits, account numbers are often defined and stored as a character field, also known as a "string" or "alphanumeric field," so that parts of the number can be searched independently.

For example, if the first two digits in a customer number were a state code, and the next three were the city code, state and city could be easily searched. Take the case of searching for state code "44" and city code "111" on a 14-digit account number defined as the following three subfields:

SubfieldPositions in Field

   State Code    1-2
   City Code     3-5
   Customer #    6-14


If the field were defined as characters (a string), the query would be LOOK FOR "44111" IN CHARACTERS 1-5. If the field were defined as a numeric field, the entire number has to be taken into consideration, making it awkward. The query would have to be GREATER THAN 44110999999999 AND LESS THAN 44112000000000. See string.
References in periodicals archive ?
It is definitely time for employees to ask what measures are being taken by their employers in the handling of registered mail and in the securing of national identification numbers, birth dates and other personal details.
The researchers linked the birth records of mothers and fathers by national identification numbers to birth records of their offspring, providing 451,393 generation files on mothers and their offspring and 295,253 records of fathers and their offspring.
A decision was reached at the meeting to create a unified statistics database using national identification numbers in order to improve the administration of the country's subsidies program, and ensure that subsidised goods are delivered to their intended recipients.

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