In its continued crackdown on illegal cryptocurrency mining, the Ukrainian government recently shut down the largest crypto mining farm in the country and seized all their assets. This included 3800 Playstation 4s in what has been called the largest bust in the country.
Cryptocurrency Mining Using PlayStation 4?
While the government does not state why there were so many PlayStations in the cryptocurrency farm or what they were being used for, speculation is rife that the sheer number of consoles seized indicates that they were being used for cryptocurrency mining purposes, in something similar to the US government hooking 1500b PlayStation 3s to build a supercomputer.
Not Without Precedent
If the PlayStation consoles were indeed being used for cryptocurrency mining, it wouldn't have been the first time something like this had been done. There have been instances such as the Homebrewed Game Boy and the Raspberry Pi Bitcoin miner.
Another Illegal Mine Bites the Dust
The shutdown comes hot on the heels of another successful closure of a cryptocurrency mining farm using stolen electricity to mine digital tokens. The mining operation was operating illegally in the north of the country, in the province of Chernihiv Oblast, where the still-unidentified owners had routed an illegal connection from an electrical substation to the mining farm.
Authorities Seized a total of 150 ASICs that were running using stolen electricity. Authorities stated that the illegal connection was taken from a substation that provided power to the ambulance service in Nizhyn, the water utility company, and a host of other essential services in the city, all of which were at risk of being left without electricity.
The owners of the illegal cryptocurrency mine tried to hide the theft from the power authorities by installing special equipment to show lower meter readings. This raid also follows another bust in which 350 ASICs were seized.
Government Push Towards Cryptocurrency Mining
The raids come at a time when the government is trying to weed out illegal mining operations and build huge data centers next to its nuclear power plants to mine cryptocurrency. It is speculated that as much as 2-3 GigaWatts could be given to Bitcoin mining operations, while officials have called for facilities operating between 250 MegaWatts and 500 MegaWatts.
Cryptocurrencies are still not regulated in Ukraine, although the country is considered one of the top adopters of crypto in the world. Authorities are still considering regulations for the crypto industry in the country.
Nuclear Energy For Bitcoin
Ukraine's Ministry of Energy signed an order to study the possible implementation of crypto mining projects to provide an additional market for nuclear energy in 2020. The ministry hopes to reduce idle load and reduce the existing burden on transmission systems.
There are already plans to create a $700 million data center near the Zaporizhzhia Nuclear Power Plant, which is Europe's largest nuclear power plant. An MOU with H2 LLC has already been signed.
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