According to a report from the local news site The Star, Malaysia’s Energy Commission, power utility firm Tenaga Nasional Berhad (TNB), and local officials arrested crypto miners responsible for the theft of more than $600,000 in electricity. The authorities raided two mining operations in the city of Iskandar Puteri. An official from the energy commission revealed that one of the crypto mining operations with 100 rigs had been operating nonstop for three years, Sahil Kohli reported.
Crypto miners siphoned $20,000 worth of power monthly.
Crypto mining operators only paid $7-14 monthly for electricity, but together with the rig operators, siphoned almost $20,000 worth of power monthly. “We found that illegal wiring was installed so that electricity was supplied directly and not through the TNB meter,” a regional director with the country’s Energy Commission noted. According to the local news report, the crypto mining operators responsible for the recent electricity theft may face ten years in jail or a maximum fine of $240,000 if found guilty. Án official from the power utility firm Tenaga Nasional Berhad said authorities had raided 90 similar installations this year, totaling 288 since 2018.
Power theft for crypto mining remains a problem for authorities.
As reported earlier, five crypto mining operators were caught stealing electricity supply worth at least RM250,000 a month this year. The crypto mining operators’ illegal activities were discovered during a joint operation mounted by SEB and the Electrical Inspectorate Unit (EIU) from Sarawak Ministry of Utilities and the police. The illegal crypto mining was uncovered at centers located in four different shophouses at Jalan Tun Ahmad Zaidi Adruce, Jalan Pahlawan, and Jalan Tunku Abdul Rahman. Several other countries have also reported electricity theft by crypto mining operators.
Crypto scams have surged across countries this year amid the ongoing global pandemic. Several countries also reported a rise in ransomware attacks, Ponzi schemes, and other different types of scams involving cryptocurrencies.