Credit Card Swipe Machines

Written by Gregg Ruais
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Credit card swipe machines save businesses considerable time and money. Credit card accounting can be very time consuming for people who do not use the right equipment. Swipe machines eliminate the need to spend several hours at data entry, which makes businesses very susceptible to human errors. The most efficient terminals read the magnetic strips located on the backs of all credit cards.

Some swipe machines are attached to stand-alone processors, but others are simple swipe components that can be hooked up to PCs. These applications are often used in auto shops or other businesses that use special billing software. Businesses often use these set ups to print more complex receipts.

How Credit Card Swipe Machines Work

The magnetic strips located on the backs of credit cards contain all the information a business needs to know about the cards they are swiping. When a person's card gets swiped through the machine, the terminal reads the card number, expiration date, and name located on the card. Some terminals have the ability to verify cardholder addresses as well.

This information is then sent to the merchant's credit card processor, which determines whether or not the card is valid. If someone has called in saying his card has been lost or stolen, or if the credit card company has noticed suspicious spending trends, that card can be denied at the point of sale. All of this occurs in just a few seconds.

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