China Accelerates Search for Disguised Crypto Miners

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In Brief
  • The Chinese government is checking laboratories and educational facilities for hidden miners.

  • Continual power shortages fuel the intensified hunt.

  • Miners continue to flee the country in light of the persecution.

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The Trust Project is an international consortium of news organizations building standards of transparency.

The Chinese government continues its tough campaign against cryptocurrencies through new inspections to uncover disguised miners. 

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The Chinese government continues its hard on crypto stance with a series of new surveillance sweeps. This latest campaign targets crypto miners in disguise. In light of the intense crackdowns on mining operations, many went undercover as data researchers and educational or storage facilities.

According to a Bloomberg report, an anonymous Chinese miner said he maintains his operations through strategic movements. He says he switches the facilities which house his machines, so it is more difficult to detect irregular power usage. 

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A local internet provider said if the crypto industry expands it would, “seriously affect economic and social development and directly threaten national security.” The statement also commented that crypto trading overall disrupts financial order. 

In October the Chinese government said it will start regularly monitoring computing activities. If the system detects irregular mining, those responsible will face consequences related to internet connectivity. 

China’s Continued Crackdown

This past week, China pushed the crackdown on crypto miners into the Hebei province. In this latest move the government partnered with whistleblowers and citizens for inside information. According to the Chinese government the whole movement is an effort for carbon-neutral emissions. 

Moreover the persecution of miners from the government pushes them out of the country entirely. Neighboring countries like Russia and crypto-friendly cities like Miami coax miners into their own crypto ecosystem. For crypto-related issues in China, the government says there is no help as crypto is not protected by law.

However it’s not only miners and mining facilities with trouble in China. Chinese branches of large scale crypto businesses are also in trouble. In the province of Shenzhen businesses linked to crypto faced discrimination from the local branch of the central bank. The highly popular Chinese exchange Huobi also closed down their Beijing operations this summer in light of the crackdowns. 

While the central bank of China has no plans of an end to this crypto purge, many in the industry view this as a costly mistake

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Savannah Fortis is a multimedia journalist covering stories at the intersection culture, international relations, and technology. Through her travels she was introduced to the crypto-community back in 2017 and has been interacting with the space since.

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