Europol says alleged crypto miner made millions from stolen electricity

A 29-year-old alleged cryptojacking “mastermind” was arrested by Ukraine and Europol last week and accused of mining $2 million worth of crypto using stolen computational power.

According to a press release from Europol, the suspect was arrested on January 9 in Mykolaiv after an unnamed cloud provider tipped off authorities after its user accounts had been compromised.

The provider, Europol, and Ukrainian authorities then worked together to investigate the scheme.  

According to The Register, three properties were raided during the investigation and the alleged miner is currently being held in Ukraine under judicial secrecy. The cloud provider also remains unnamed.

Read more: Illegal crypto mining rigs found in Poland’s Supreme Administrative Court

Cryptojacking is essentially the unauthorized access of computing infrastructure by malicious actors who want to redirect computational power to crypto miners. Through this process, cryptojackers can avoid paying costly bills and pass them on to the targeted cloud providers

Indeed, according to a 2022 threat report from Sysdig, cited by The Register, cryptojackers reportedly make $1 in profit for every $53 in victim-paid bills. Using this estimate, the 29-year-old in question could potentially have cost providers $106 million in bills.

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