A credit card printer is employed to create a carbon copy imprint of cards used by customers for purchases. Card impressions are made by inserting and stabilizing a credit card within a groove embedded in the imprinter along with a specialized carbon copy receipt. An awkward to manipulate handle is abruptly slid horizontally across the entire surface of both the card and receipt to form the imprint and duplicates.
Today, these devices are generally utilized when computerized point-of-sale systems fail, particularly now that smart phone technology offers simple credit card processing instantly. Imprinters allow retailers to continue processing sales when all digital methods fail, and it affords both parties evidence of proof of purchase, the presence of the card, and an authorized signature to rely on in case of a dispute. Known for taking off a little skin during the sliding process, imprinters are often jokingly referenced as “knuckle busters.”