It has been reported by a local news outlet in China that teachers at a local middle school in the Hunan Province of Chenzhous, have been caught mining the second biggest cryptocurrency, Ethereum on school property. The operation allegedly was carried out for months on end but they didn’t go completely unnoticed
The operation for mining Ethereum actually slowed down the network at the school making it hard for the other teachers to actually do their job. In the end, the teachers wanted answers and eventually uncovered the mining operation.
By way of explanation, the Principal and Vice Principal, who were accomplices in the enterprise moved the operation to the school due to their electricity bills being too high. Principal Lei Hua lost his job during the disaster and the Vice Principal was let off with only a warning.
Hua explained about how the machines came to be placed at the school and that he originally spent over 10,000 yuan on the first rig and then came to realise that too much energy was being used up so he moved it to one of the school’s dormitory. He later spent another 40,000 yuan on purchasing seven more rigs and the found that these wouldn’t fit in the dorm so he moved them into the school. Overall, Hua spent the equivalent of more than $2,000 in electricity bills for the school.
This isn’t new in the industry
It is known that people in the past have used public resources to power private cryptocurrency ventures.
An employee of the Federal Reserve was once caught mining Bitcoin for two years (2012-2014) by using government servers. He paid the fine of five thousand dollars and caught 12 months probation period.
As mentioned by CCN:
“An administrator with the New York Department of Education got away with it for far less time, mining only at night in 2014. Being a union employee, his fine was more interesting: four vacation days worth about $600.”
An IT manager was also caught at Florida’s Department of Citrus when he was caught when the agency called for an investigation into their utility bills being unusually high.
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