Malaysian authorities reportedly destroyed 1,069 bitcoin mining rigs in connection with an approximately $ 2 million power theft in the county. The machines were seen on video being crushed by a steamroller that also arrested 6 people.
The crushed machines were valued at an estimated $ 1.25 million and were confiscated between February and April in a joint action by the police in the city of Miri and the energy company Sarawak Energy, the Malaysian news agency reported. A video of the steam rolling was released by Dayak Daily last week.
The six arrested were fined US $ 2,000 and sentenced to eight months in prison, Miri Police Chief ACP Hakemal Hawari said in an official statement to the media.
Power theft while mining bitcoin is a growing problem around the world, especially since the price of bitcoins rose to more than $ 60,000 per coin earlier this year.
To mine bitcoins, computers are used to solve complex math problems. If successful, users will be rewarded with freshly minted units of the popular cryptocurrency. On Monday, the value per coin was $ 31,300.
“Electricity theft for Bitcoin mining activities has led to frequent blackouts and in 2021 three houses were razed to the ground due to illegal electricity connections,” Miri police chief said in an official statement.
The problem is not limited to Malaysia. The same goes for the UK, which saw a bank with around 100 bitcoin mining rigs in one location. Originally it was said that it was a marijuana farm. The site had stolen thousands of dollars’ worth of electricity to run its operations.
The bitcoin and cryptocurrency process has been blown with the demand for energy, which has an impact on climate change. That being said, the potential of cryptocurrencies has disrupted financial systems.
It takes special computers to perform these procedures and some groups have seen it as an opportunity to make money in cryptocurrency. The machines sell for thousands of dollars and take months to ship.
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