Major Malaysian electricity distribution company, Tenaga Nasional Bhd (TNB) has reportedly lost as much as 3.2 million Malaysian ringgit ($760,736) to illegal cryptocurrency mining farms situated within Kuantan.
As per the report, thirty-three mining farms were allegedly involved in electricity theft for six months. During this period, they tapped power from the electricity distribution board to power their mining rigs while paying only the same fee as other residents.
“TNB collected evidence that 23 premises were running bitcoin mining activities while the other 10 premises were aware of our raid this time around and destroyed the evidence,” Siti Sarah Johana Mohd, the TNB General Manager for metering stated.
She further explained the nature of the illegal electricity usage, mentioning that in a specific farm which they raided, the premises were “using 1,500 Amp of unmetered electricity while the meter was only showing 3 Amp.”
Following the discovery, though, the premises would now have to pay for the alleged electricity theft in arrears.
That figure will be a deficit of the 219 Malaysian ringgit ($52) which they paid while in the real sense they should have been billed 108,000 Malaysian ringgit ($25,674) monthly for the unmetered electricity.
The top official finally asked premise owners to beware of such unreported electricity usage in their area and make sure to transfer the account to the tenant's name. A failure to do this will likely result in the electricity company holding the house owner responsible for the extra electricity costs.
Sadly, the latest development isn’t the first instance of people employing illegal tactics to mine cryptocurrency. In May, Stmarket.co reported that the Australian Federal Police (AFP) arrested a 33-year-old former government official who used his agency’s computer network to mine Bitcoin.