Authorities in the town of Miri on the island of Borneo have taken down an illegal cryptocurrency mining operation and seized equipment after receiving a tip-off from the public. According to local news outlet The Borneo Post, the operation was discovered by Sarawak Energy, who found 34 cryptocurrency mining servers using stolen electricity through cable tapping.
The authorities have confiscated all the equipment used in the illegal operation, including servers and tapping cables. The local police have initiated an investigation into this latest mining operation to be shut down on the island.
Sarawak Energy estimated that the operation was consuming around 6,000 Malaysian ringgits per month ($1300) worth of stolen electricity. In a statement, the utility company highlighted that despite having some of the lowest energy prices in Malaysia, energy theft still persists as a major issue.
This is not the first case of illegal cryptocurrency mining on Borneo. Earlier in 2023, authorities seized more than 137 mining servers in Senadin, the same state where Miri is located.
As the cryptocurrency market experiences a prolonged bear market, Bitcoin miners are facing significant challenges. Many operations are under strain, leading to mining firms and operators selling BTC in record amounts over the past few months.
Despite the challenges, the Bitcoin mining ecosystem has achieved several milestones. In 2023, the network hash rate reached all-time highs, indicating the network’s resilience and the competition among miners for block rewards. However, smaller operators without economies of scale are finding it difficult to cope with the increased strain.
Lower electricity prices provide an advantage for miners to be more profitable. This is why some illegal mining operators resort to stealing electricity from the grid. By eliminating electricity costs, these unlawful operators can maximize their profits and cover their hardware expenses.
The illegal cryptocurrency mining operations in Miri and Senadin highlight the ongoing issue of energy theft and the need for stricter enforcement against such activities. Authorities must work closely with utility companies to identify and shut down these operations effectively.
In conclusion, authorities in Miri have taken down an illegal cryptocurrency mining operation following a tip-off from the public. The operation was discovered using stolen electricity through cable tapping. Equipment, including servers and tapping cables, has been seized, and investigations are underway. These incidents emphasize the challenges faced by Bitcoin miners in a bear market and the importance of addressing energy theft in the cryptocurrency mining industry.