skim·​mer | \ ˈski-mər How to pronounce skimmer (audio) \

Definition of skimmer

1 : one that skims specifically : a flat perforated scoop or spoon used for skimming
2 : any of a small genus (Rynchops) of long-winged marine birds that have the lower mandible longer than the upper
3 : a usually straw flat-crowned hat with a wide straight brim
4 : a fitted sleeveless dress with a usually flaring skirt
5 : a device that is attached to an electronic card reader (as on an ATM) and used to obtain data (such as a credit card number) secretly and illicitly The credit union said someone had fitted a skimmer over the ATM card slot to collect information on inserted cards but the company said it wasn't sure how many cards had been affected at this time.The Leader-Herald (Gloversville, NewYork) Once you put your card in, the device, called a skimmer, reads and records all the account information stored on the magnetic strip, and even retrieves your PIN as you punch it into the keypad.— Mary Hunt

Examples of skimmer in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web At the scene, crews deployed absorbent pads, deployed a boom system to stop the spill from spreading and used a skimmer that is pumping the oil to a vacuum truck, the Coast Guard said. Anchorage Daily News, "Coast Guard reports vessel spilled hydraulic oil in Kodiak," 28 Dec. 2020 Fish out the pasta with a large wire skimmer or tongs and drop it directly into the sauce in the skillet. Tribune News Service, cleveland, "Five fast pasta sauces without tomatoes," 9 Nov. 2020 Starting in April, a federal law will expand TED requirements to include skimmer vessels that are 40 feet long and longer. Tristan Baurick,, "Louisiana to help pay for devices that helps save sea turtles from shrimp boats," 20 Oct. 2020 People considering buying a new phone plan should steer clear of Boom!, at least until the skimmer script is removed. Dan Goodin, Ars Technica, "Boom! Hacked page on mobile phone website is stealing customers’ card data," 5 Oct. 2020 Considering that the purchases were made using a credit card transaction via the magnetic strip, this meant that the resident’s account information had been stolen by a card skimmer. John Benson, cleveland, "Card skimmer scam leads to fraudulent purchases on resident’s bank account: Brecksville Police Blotter," 30 Sep. 2020 Using a slotted spoon or wire skimmer, remove the asparagus and rinse spears under cold running water to halt the cooking., "Recipes for summer’s bounty: Mains," 16 Sep. 2020 Oil barriers were in place and a skimmer ship to scoop up the fuel was nearby. Andrew Meldrum, Star Tribune, "Mauritius copes with split Japanese ship that spilled oil," 17 Aug. 2020 Oil barriers were in place and a skimmer ship was nearby by the time the vessel broke apart. Fox News, "Mauritius oil disaster: Stricken Japanese ship spits apart, remaining fuel spreads into waters," 16 Aug. 2020

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'skimmer.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of skimmer

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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The first known use of skimmer was in the 14th century

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Last Updated

11 Jan 2021

Cite this Entry

“Skimmer.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 17 Jan. 2021.

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How to pronounce skimmer (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of skimmer

: a spoon with holes in it that is used by cooks for skimming things

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