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This sometimes led to a case of mistaken identity, either accidentally or intentionally, by acting on behalf of the charge account owner or out of malice to defraud both the charge account owner and the merchant.
Beginning in the 1930s, merchants started to move from charge coins to the newer Charga-Plate. It was a 2½" × 1¼" rectangle of sheet metal related to Addressograph and military dog tag systems.
In other words, credit cards combine payment services with extensions of credit.
Complex fee structures in the credit card industry may limit customers' ability to comparison shop, helping to ensure that the industry is not price-competitive and helping to maximize industry profits.
In recording a purchase, the plate was laid into a recess in the imprinter, with a paper "charge slip" positioned on top of it.
The record of the transaction included an impression of the embossed information, made by the imprinter pressing an inked ribbon against the charge slip.
Charga-Plates were issued by large-scale merchants to their regular customers, much like department store credit cards of today.
In some cases, the plates were kept in the issuing store rather than held by customers.
The card number's prefix, called the Bank Identification Number, is the sequence of digits at the beginning of the number that determine the bank to which a credit card number belongs.It also reduced the number of errors, by having a standardised form of numbers on the sales slip, instead of various kind of handwriting style.Because the customer's name was not on the charge coin, almost anyone could use it.A credit card also differs from a cash card, which can be used like currency by the owner of the card.A credit card differs from a charge card also in that a credit card typically involves a third-party entity that pays the seller and is reimbursed by the buyer, whereas a charge card simply defers payment by the buyer until a later date.