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WARNING: CIA is NOT demanding $10,000 from you for child porn possession

Image: Getty

Australians have been warned not to fall for a scam email going around imitating the CIA, trying to extort money from unsuspecting online citizens.

The Australian Cyber Security Centre said on Wednesday afternoon that it has become aware of malicious emails pretending to be from the American crime agency.

“The emails state that the recipient’s personal details, addresses, contact information and information relating to their relatives are contained in a case file about the distribution and storage of pornographic electronic materials involving underage children.”

CIA scam email. (Image: Australian Cyber Security Centre)

The message then threatens the receiver that arrests are scheduled – but a payment of US$10,000 in Bitcoin would make the problem go away.

The ACSC advised Australians that receive this email to not reply or contact the sender, do not make any payments to the sender, and to delete the email immediately.

Impersonation scams over email are common, according to the ACSC, and can be “traumatic for the victim”.

“A government agency or trusted business will never ask you to pay by unusual methods, such as a gift or store card, iTunes card, wire transfer or bitcoin.”

The fake CIA emails come after a Sydney woman and man was charged last week for allegedly stealing $2.1 million from two companies by impersonating suppliers.

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