Massachusetts Man Is Indicted After Using School’s Crawl Space To Mine Crypto
The town’s facilities director discovered computers and assorted equipment in the crawl space in December 2021, and later reported it to the police. The town’s IT director confirmed that the configuration was a crypto-mining network connected to the school’s electrical system.
Nahas was identified as the suspect, and he reportedly resigned from his position in early 2022. He was set to be arraigned on Feb. 23 but did not appear in court, leading the judge to issue a default warrant for his arrest. The original article did not report which cryptocurrency Nahas mined, but Bitcoin is commonly mined in both legitimate and illicit mining operations.
Illegal crypto-mining operations are prevalent, as electricity costs can greatly offset Bitcoin mining profits. According to Visual Capitalist, it cost $35,404 to mine a single Bitcoin last year, more than the value of Bitcoin at that time. Illegal miners can increase their profits by relying on a venue that already pays for electricity.
Since 2017, the Russian business portal TA Adviser has reported dozens of illegal mining incidents, with perpetrators mining cryptocurrency on the premises of universities, mental hospitals, government buildings, and airports, among other locations. While most of these incidents involve illegal connections to electricity sources, a portion also involves direct theft of mining equipment and other related crimes.