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Ukrainian Law Enforcement Raids Illegal Mining Farm With GPUs, PlayStations

The miners reportedly used the electricity of the local power provider.

Jul 9, 2021 at 12:38 p.m. UTC
Updated Sep 14, 2021 at 1:23 p.m. UTC

Ukrainian law enforcement shut down a “major” crypto mining farm, the Security Service of Ukraine (SSU) said Thursday.

According to an official report, the miners occupied a utility room at the local electricity provider in the town of Vinnitsa southwest of Kiev and illegally plugged into its power grid. “Entire blocks of Vinnitsa could have been left without power," the SSU said.

The law officers seized 5,000 units of hardware, including “3,800 PlayStations, 500 GPUs (graphic processing units), 50 CPUs (central processing units), documents, notepads, phones and flash drives," according to the report. Authorities are now trying to identify the people involved with the mining farm, possibly including the staff of the electricity provider, Vinnytsiaoblenergo.

Vinnytsiaoblenergo may have lost as much as $250,000 a month, the investigators said.

Ukrainian law enforcement officials discover illegal mining farms from time to time, raiding venues with unauthorized access to the electricity grid. Earlier in July, the SSU shut down a smaller farm in the Chernihiv region containing 150 application-specific integrated circuits (ASICs), Forklog reported.

Ukraine is about to pass its first crypto regulation, with the Draft Bill on Virtual Assets proceeding through parliament. The country's central bank has been exploring the prospects of issuing a Ukrainian hryvnia-backed central bank digital currency, and earlier this month, the future CBDC was included in the national regulation for payment systems.

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