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INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. (December 23, 2015) – Many local businesses have missed the October 1st deadline of having credit card microchip readers installed. The Better Business Bureau is warning consumers that their credit cards may not be protected if businesses do not have their card readers activated.

Credit card chip companies like EMV Migration Forum say more than 650,000 businesses in the U.S. have microchip card readers. BBB President and CEO, Timothy Maniscalo said even though these businesses have the readers, that doesn’t mean they have them activated. The October deadline meant businesses would be held responsible if a customers credit card information becomes compromised.

“It was meant to be the target date for when both the financial institutions that issue the cards and the merchants that accept these cards, would be ready for EMV,” explained Randy Vanderhoof, Director of EMV Migration Forum.

The chip technology was designed to help protect customers after many data breaches. Scammers can continue to gain access to your credit card information when you swipe your card instead of insert the card into the chip reader.

“The reason why this chip technology makes payments more secure, is it prevents the most common type of payment fraud, which is counterfeit cards,” Vanderhoof said.

It’s expected the number of retailers who use card readers will increase after the new year.

“After the holiday season is over and merchants can get back to a somewhat normal state in their businesses that we’re going to see a big increase in the number of merchants that activate those devices,” Vanderhoof said.

If you are a customer who is concerned that your local businesses still doesn’t have the chip readers, the BBB has some advice for you.

“I would just remind the retailer that they really should be getting those new devices and making sure they are up and active,” said Maniscalo.

Retailers need to take note, too. Maniscalo said scammers are paying attention to who is using card readers and who’s not.

“You want to stay one step ahead of the security scammers that are out there and trying to get your money,” Maniscalo said.

If you want more information on how to protect yourself, click here.

If you want more details on chip cards and readers, click here.