The number of individuals convicted for mining bitcoins at illegal locations has continued to grow, with a certain Russian nuclear engineer, Denis Baykov adding his name to that list per a report today by Moscow Times.
Baykov, identified as an employee at Russia’s Sarov nuclear center (home to the country’s biggest supercomputers), was fined $7000 for attempting to use one of these supercomputers to mine Bitcoin.
Such unauthorized action reportedly was in defiance of computer operation rules at the nuclear center, hence the punishment specified by the city court. The court afterward confirmed that two other engineers, Andrei Rybkin, and Andrei Shatokhin — are awaiting sentencing for a similar offense.
Meanwhile, regarding efforts taken by the engineers to conceal their heinous activities, a lawyer representing one of the defendants is quoted in the report as saying that his clients used software designed to mask their operations.
According to the lawyer, they had apparently mined some bitcoins before getting caught.
“I can say one thing for sure: they were not detained on the first day they began to mine,” lawyer Kovalyov reportedly said.
The decision of these nuclear engineers to use the state-owned supercomputers to mine bitcoins comes as a little surprise given the 1,000 trillion transactions per second speed reportedly possessed by these machines.
In a similar development in May, the Australian Federal Police (AFP) convicted a 33-year-old man who formerly worked as an IT contractor for the government. The man had allegedly abused his position to use computing power generated for the agency’s network to mine cryptocurrencies for personal benefits.
Also within the same period, Brazilian authorities busted a secret crypto mining farm with 25 machines and fined its operator for falsifying electricity rates.