Payment processors say CUs are behind pace to upgrade to EMV chips by October 2015 and may face fraud loss liability.
PULSE survey finds 17% of credit unions said they'll face the risk.
Credit unions saw 16% of their cards hit by fraud in 2013, compared to 12% for community banks and 14% for large banks.
If banks can beat retailers in the race to adopt EMV technology, they may have a fraud liability advantage.
A new report from Aite Group says 70% of credit and debit cards will have EMV chips by December 2015.
The big box retailer will launch the proprietary credit cards June 23.
Chip-and-PIN cards will work at retailer terminals.
The EMV Migration Forum expects another 100 million EMV-enabled cards will be issued over the next year.
Confusion over what chip and PIN technology can and can't do has experts questioning if EMV implementation is a good idea.
Competing choices for chip-and-PIN emerging as liability deadline nears.