Principal Fired After Using School’s Electricity to Secretly Mine Cryptocurrency


A school principal in Hunan province has been fired for creating a cryptocurrency mine operation in the school and raising the building’s electricity bills.

Lei Hua, a middle school principal in Chenzhou, purchased more than 10,000 yuan ($1,400) on equipment used to mine cryptocurrency. However, Hua did not realize that utility fees ran so high from running the equipment, and could not pay for them, according to Xinhua.

Instead of ending the mining there, Hua connected all of his equipment to his middle school’s electronic lab, using the school’s internet and electricity to continuously mine Ethereum around the clock.

The principal’s cryptocurrency operation caused power shortages and slow internet issues around the school, getting complaints from both students and teachers. A worker informed Hua about the rise in electricity usage, but he brushed it aside and blamed it on heating issues.

Eventually, the mining in the electricity lab became too loud to hide due to the whirring of all of the equipment and was eventually found. The entire set up was discovered to have cost the school an additional 14,714 yuan ($2,100) in utilities.

However, the operation wasn’t as secretive as Hua thought. The middle school’s deputy principal had set up a similar operation in the physics lab to mine cryptocurrency but was only given a disciplinary warning.

Cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin and Ethereal gained worldwide attention in late 2017 after the value of Bitcoin rose exponentially, passing $11,500 and climbing for the first time, according to Forbes.

Countries such as China have banned cryptocurrencies until the government has set proper guidelines and regulations around the financial technology.

Images via Screenshot WeChat Public Account / 湖南交通频道

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