The ACCC has warned Australians about a phishing email asking consumers to pay bogus gas or electricity bills, as part of a wider crack down on email scams and online fraud.
According to the ACCC, the emails "purport to be from legitimate energy companies and look like the real deal", with requests for payment on outstanding accounts or claims that consumers have exceeded their energy use limit and can receive a discount if they pay straight away.
"The email directs you to click on a link or attachment to view your statement and arrange payment," the ACCC said. "If you click, your computer may become infected with malicious software that allows scammers to remote access into your computer and watch you entering personal information such as online banking details."
The ACCC said it has received a large number or reports about the scam, which leads consumers to realistic looking payment websites, resulting in wire transfers that are virtually impossible to trace or recover.
The warning comes just months after the competition watchdog lifted the lid on just how much Australians lost toin 2013. According to the ACCC, 2770 reports of romance scams were reported in 2013, with Australians losing $25.3 million all up.