Categories: News

Nuclear Plant Staff Compromise Security To Mine Cryptocurrency

Cryptocurrency mining has taken something of a backseat since Bitcoin crashed in early 2018. With the price steadily recovering, however, it is still practiced by a lot of people looking to essentially make a little money using nothing more than the power of their PC. It does, however, perhaps come to something when staff at a nuclear power plant not only feel the need to engage in this but also doing so on the company time!

In a report via ZDNET, however, staff working at a nuclear plant in Ukraine did exactly this. Now, I know what you’re thinking… did they use the plants ‘supercomputer’ to generate Bitcoin? No, unfortunately, it’s a lot more disturbing than that.

A dramatization of the events

Nuclear Plant Workers Compromise Security by Mining Cryptocurrency

So what exactly happened here? Well, various workers at the plant were found to be bringing in their own mining systems. They would then hook them up and run them from the ‘office’. This, of course, has a number of benefits for them. Most notably the fact that they’re running up someone else’s electric bill rather than their own. This isn’t, incidentally, uncommon as we once reported how a schools headmaster in China was running his (surprisingly elaborate) cryptocurrency mining set-up from the school he ran.

To achieve this, however, they had to connect their systems to the ‘work’ internet. As such, a nuclear power plant was exposed to the internet at large. Yes, no security between the outside world and a nuclear plant other than (probably) Windows Defender! – I’d dread to think of the ransomware price placed on a nuclear power plant!

What Has Happened Since?

Since the discovery (which came following a government raid) it has been reported that several staff members have been arrested. They (as you might expect) have had their equipment seized, and likely face very serious charges likely leading to a custodial sentence. This isn’t just stealing electricity, after all, it’s compromising a nuclear power plants security! Oh, and the small matter of that the plant (as most do) had a strict no external technology policy.

Although details on their set-ups have not entirely been disclosed, it is known that at least 2 mining systems were found featuring a total of 11 AMD Radeon 470 graphics cards.

We do, of course, hope that this is only an isolated incident. Otherwise, we can only pray that this acts as a deterrent to anyone else who thinks mining on the company clock is a safe and sensible idea!

What do you think? – Let us know in the comments!

Mike Sanders

Disqus Comments Loading...

Recent Posts

Fractal Design Define 7 TG Black PC Case Review

Fractal Design is one of the most respect brand names in the PC market. Sure, they make some nice cooling…

2 hours ago

RDR2 Modder is in Hot Water over ‘Hot Coffee’ Mod

If you know a little about your gaming history, then the mere mention of 'hot coffee' in this article's title…

3 hours ago

Metro Exodus Gets off to A Strong Start on Steam

Earlier this month we saw the end of the year's exclusivity deal with the Epic Games Store and, as such,…

3 hours ago

AOC Launches the 35” Agon AG353UCG 200Hz Gaming Monitor

Display specialist AOC has just announced the launch of the 35” (88.98 cm) AOC AGON AG353UCG, a monitor which is…

4 hours ago

GIGABYTE Updates its Brix Mini-PC For Intel Comet Lake CPUs

Over recent years, mini-PC's have become a more popular market for those on the move who don't necessarily want (or…

4 hours ago

Nvidia Confirms Cyberpunk 2077 is Coming to GeForce NOW!

Earlier this month Nvidia brought a semi-surprise to the gaming market by launching their GeForce Now game streaming service. While…

5 hours ago