Police Mistake Crypto Mining Rigs For Drug Den in Raid Gone Wrong

Police in Adelaide, Australia raided the home of Rob Butvila expecting to find a marijuana grow room, but instead they found an elaborate crypto mining set up, complete with a ventilation system to keep heat the miners generate at bay.
Butvila is now considering taking legal action against the local police department after they left the man’s home in shambles and are refusing to respond to requests to help with damages.
Police Destroy Man’s Home In Search for Drugs, Discover Crypto Miners Instead
Police and other government agencies use a number of tactics to sniff out marijuana growing operations, both at large scale and even in individual’s homes. These tactics can include using an infrared heat detector to locate potential light sources emitting heat, watching out for skyrocketing energy bills, or searching for ventilation systems that allow airflow around marijuana plants and help to contain strong odors emanating from grow rooms.
Unfortunately, for crypto enthusiasts, an advanced crypto mining setup can also cause an increase in heat, energy consumption, and a need for complex ventilation that could be mistaken for a grow operation, as Rob Butvila of Adelaide, Australia found out the hard way.
Related Reading | Estate of Columbian Cartel Kingpin Claims Tether Crypto Is Untrustworthy
Butvila’s home was raided by the South Australia Police (SAPOL) force over suspicions the home was actually a front for a grow operation. Butvila claims that he arrived home to find everything from “gates, doors and fence panels removed and broke,” so police could forcefully gain entry to the home.
“To make things worse they left the place wide open and a hard drive is now missing and the security camera cable has been cut,” he explained, continuing that “it would be at least [in] $1000 damage.”
Crypto Mining Confusion: YouTube Video Demonstrates Damage Done to Home
Butvila shared a video walkthrough of his home on Youtube that clearly shows broken doors and other damage, yet no grow room – only a rather small crypto mining setup.

A spokeswoman for SAPOL concluded that no evidence of any wrongdoing was discovered on the premises and that a note was “left for the owner to contract police,” who have yet to issue an apology.
Related Reading | Tools of the Trade: Monero and Privacy Coins Are Creating More Efficient Criminals
Police, according to Butvila, have also ignored inquiries about who would be responsible for the damages to his property during the mistaken raid, and even hung up when he called pressing for more information.
Butvila is considering legal action if the police don’t respond to quotes he’s received on what the damages would cost to repair, in order to restore his home and crypto mining setup to the condition it was in before the SOPAL raid.
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Argo Blockchain Sees 146% Increase in Crypto Mining Package Sales

A shattered crypto market has not deterred miners from purchasing crypto mining software packages, revealed Argo Blockchain.
The U.K.-based Mining-as-a-Service (MaaS) firm noted a 146% jump in its sales between October 1 and December 4 after selling a new batch of packages.
It led the company to beat its January 2019 sales targets ahead of time and by a notable margin. As of now, Argo expects to note an annual revenue of $6.2 million, up from $0.26 million when it listed on the London Stock Exchange.
Meanwhile, the firm stated that its net cash balance as of November 30 had reached close to $19.22 million.
Mike Edwards, co-founder, and director of Argo, claimed that their high revenue growth proved their strategies were working despite the crash in the crypto market lately. He acknowledged that the demand for crypto mining packages was already going up, which made Argo expand its mining capacity in September to cater to seven-times more subscribers. As expected, the supply underfed the growing demand, leading to an immediate sell-off of the mining software packages after release.
“Demand for the company’s packages continues to exceed supply, but the company looked to the future with confidence,” Edwards added.
Related Reading: US Mining CEO: Bitcoin Miners Are Being Flushed Out of the Market
Future Projections
Argo has a sustainable business model that could lead to “highly-profitable” fiscal quarters in the future, believes Alan Howard, a senior equity analyst at Argo’s house broker, Mirabaud Securities.
The financial expert explained that the firm had started posting profits just three months after the launch, with its annual revenue run rate hitting $2.5 million. He recognized that if Argo manages to sell 30,000 packages within the first 12 months of launch, its revenue run rate will peak to as highs as $18 million. It would remain profitable even after cutting down operational costs related to hardware, customer acquisition, and electricity.
“Longer term, the company is well positioned to develop a mass market and highly profitable global crypto-mining service, having already secured enough power capacity at highly attractive electricity costs (US$0.030-0.038 per kWh) to be able to service over 150,000 packages from its Canadian data centers,” Howard had said.
The company could also benefit from Bitcoin’s falling difficulty which makes it easier for miners like them to mine the digital currency while preserving the essence of its proof-of-work blockchain. However, the projections do not specifically describe how much of a role Bitcoin could play in posting bullish figures for Argo.
Simple Mining
The crypto mining sector faced huge losses after the crypto market crashed more than 80% from its all-time high. Miners that were bullish on specific cryptocurrencies pre-ordered expensive mining equipment, expecting their tokenized rewards would be met with higher fiat equivalent down the road.
At the same time, chipmaking companies such as Nvidia and AMD misread the demand for crypto mining equipment and oversupplied the market. As the demand dropped due to non-profitability, they eventually stopped manufacturing more mining chips.
Argo, on the other hand, has removed the necessity of owing mining equipment from the equation. Their users subscribe to their monthly packages, and they use the money to run their mining operations in countries with cheaper electricity rates – thereby, ensuring profits to all. Noting that Argo is heavily regulated, investors appear more confident in their business model.
Last checked, Argo shares went up 18.4% to 5.625p.
Featured image from Shutterstock.
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ASUS Announces Crypto-Mining Partnership Despite Market Challenges

ASUS has announced a partnership with Quantumcloud that turns idle graphic cards into cryptocurrency miners.
ASUS Partners with Quantumcloud
Taiwan-based computer and electronic component manufacturer AsusTek Computer Inc., most commonly known as ASUS, has partnered with “innovation factory” Quantumcloud, reports Tech Radar.
The partnership will allow owners of ASUS-branded graphics cards to mine for cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin and Ethereum, while a GPU is idle. According to the report, it turns a regular ASUS graphics card into a GPU that can “potentially earn a passive income by installing Quantumcloud’s software.”
ASUS graphics card owners will be able to download Quantuncloud software that allows them to tap into the GPU’s processing power, and use it to mine for cryptocurrencies. The software also provides users with the ability to set up a wallet, perform conversions, transfers, and more, right from the software, removing much of the guess work out of cryptocurrency mining.
Related Reading: ASUS Introduces 20 GPU Motherboards for Crypto Mining
Once the software is set up, and cryptocurrencies have been mined, users can also opt for digital payouts via PayPal or WeChat.
ASUS says that all customer user and financial data is protected under the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), so ASUS GPU owners can rest assured using their graphics card to mine for cryptocurrencies is a safe and secure process.
Interest In Crypto Mining Dwindles as ASUS’ Competitor Shares Suffer
ASUS continuing down the path of cryptocurrency mining is a surprising move. This is due to the fact that some of ASUS’ biggest competitors across a number of industries are suffering major financial losses due to their investment in supporting the cryptocurrency mining craze last year, and are now fleeing the industry.
California-based Nvidia went all-in on cryptocurrency mining at the peak of the 2017 bull run. Cryptocurrencies can be mined using specialized mining hardware designed for the task, however, graphics cards, the same ones that companies like Nvidia, AMD, and ASUS produce, can also be used – albeit less effectively – to mine for cryptocurrencies.
Related Reading: Nvidia Pulls Out of Crypto Mining Citing Low Revenue
As the price of Bitcoin and Ethereum began to climb throughout 2017, so did sales, and thus demand, of GPUs. Store shelves everywhere were left empty as those hooked by the crypto craze sought to increase their cryptocurrency holdings any way they could.
But as the cryptocurrency bubble popped, interest in cryptocurrency mining evaporated as portability dropped.
GPU-manufacturers like Nvidia were taken by surprise by the initial demand, thinking that they had a new revenue stream to tap into. Nvidia responded by increasing production of its GPUs, but is now regretting that decision as sales of its cryptocurrency-based products have declined significantly, reducing the company’s annual financial projections.
The news of lowered revenue expectations sent Nvidia shares plummeting by 17%. Jensen Huang, Nvidia’s CEO, explained that “the crypto hangover lasted longer than we expected.”
Featured image from Shutterstock.
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Bitcoin Cash War Resulting in the Loss of Millions of Dollars in Mining

With the drama and chaos that ensued with the hard fork of Bitcoin Cash on November 15 is still going on as the trading volume of BCH goes down significantly while incurring losses in millions in the mining of respective Bitcoin ABC and Bitcoin Cash SV. Meanwhile, GlobeeCom has pulled out its support for Bitcoin Cash due to this hard fork.
A Serious Hit to Trading Volume while Losing Support & Millions
The split of Bitcoin Cash (BCH) into Bitcoin Cash ABC and Bitcoin Cash Satoshi Vision has been a chaotic one. It has also been considered one of the factors that initially drove the crypto market into the red.
However, apart from playing an alleged role in the price crash, the fifth largest cryptocurrency has getting hit pretty hard itself. At the time of writing, BCH been trading at $200 while registering the 24-hour losses of 12.49 percent, the highest losses borne altcoin among the top 24 cryptos. With a market cap of $3.5 billion, it is managing the daily trading volume of $73 million.
The trading volume is certainly taking a serious hit going to its lowest volume as pointed out by the popular crypto trader, Crypto Hustle on Twitter:

This past week there’s been an increase in volume for various coins. #Bcash at $62M is at its lowest volume since the days of its launch. The recent soap opera is quickly eroding its market confidence. It would be great for crypto if this shit corrodes into wasteland zombiecoin.
— ฿TF%$D! (@CryptoHustle) November 22, 2018

In the past 15 days, Bitcoin Cash price has tumbled down from $636 to $200. It is currently down about 95 percent from its peak at $4,355 in December.

BCH 15-days price chart, Source: Coinmarketcap
Meanwhile, both Bitcoin Cash ABC and Bitcoin Cash SV have lost a combined value of $3.13 million in mining both the cryptocurrencies as stated by Bitcoin evangelist and entrepreneur & CIO at a Digital Currency Fund, Alistair Milne on Twitter:
“So far the two camps of Bcash have:
… spent $3.25million to mine $1.9million of $BCHABC ($1.35mil loss)
… spent $2.15million to mine $370,000 of $BCHSV ($1.78mil loss)

The combined value of $BCHABC and $BCHSV is less than 50% of the value of 1 $BCH pre-fork.”
Amidst this war, a number of exchanges like Coinbase and Kraken are supporting Bitcoin Cash ABC and providing it the ticker of BCH. As for the reason behind the same, Coinbase team shared “We have observed consensus in the community that the BCH ABC chain will retain the designation of Bitcoin Cash (BCH). Coinbase will also adopt this designation for BCH. Coinbase has made this decision based on a number of factors including the fact that ABC has a higher hashrate and a longer proof-of-work chain.”
However, GlobeeCom with approximately 2k merchants that works on making crypto payments easy and support many plugins like WooCommerce and Shopify is no longer supporting Bitcoin Cash as reported by Samson Mow of CSO at Blockstream,

Aaaand it’s gone! #Bcash pic.twitter.com/8Z0GV7DtC1
— Samson Mow (@Excellion) November 23, 2018

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Source: CoinGape

South Korea Points to North Korea as Cryptojacking Culprit

South Korean intelligence officials are pointing toward North Korea as being the responsible party behind a string of cryptojacking cases across the country.
North Korea Continues to Mine for Crypto on South Korean Computers
According to a new intelligence gathering report, prompted by an upcoming visit to North Korea’s nuclear test site by international inspectors, a government-mandated audit conducted by South Korea’s National Intelligence Service (NIS) has revealed that North Korean hackers are continuing to mine for cryptocurrencies using hacked computers across South Korea.
The NIS believes that North Korea is cryptojacking unsuspecting user’s computers as a means to generate cash flow into the economically-challenged country, and is continuing to use a malware discovered earlier this year.
Back in January, cybersecurity firm AlienVault identified a malware application tied to North Korea that was being used to hijack computers and use them to mine for cryptocurrency.
The malware found mines for Monero (XMR), a privacy-focused cryptocurrency often at the center of most cryptojacking cases, before sending it to a server at Kim Il Sung University located in Pyongyang, North Korea. Similar efforts from North Korea are continuing on their neighboring country’s computers, causing government officials to become concerned.
North Korea’s Growing Interest in Crypto Continues
North Korea’s interest in cryptocurrencies doesn’t stop with cryptojacking. The rogue nation is also said to be responsible for a pair of cryptocurrency investment scams, have begun using cryptocurrencies to avoid United States-led economic sanctions, and may even be developing a cryptocurrency of their own.
Last week, a report emerged from research firm Recorded Future that dove into the internet-browsing habits of select North Korean government officials.
The research found that North Korea was the likely party responsible for two cryptocurrency scams: a proof-of-stake coin called “hold” and a fraudulent ICO called Marine Chain. Both investment vehicles were used to scam investors out of their hard earned cash.
North Korea also joins Iran and Russia in considering using cryptocurrencies to avoid economic sanctions imposed by the Trump administration. Independent financial analysts Lourdes Miranda and Ross Delston revealed in an interview that North Korea is using “multiple international exchangers, mixing and shifting services” to mirror the money laundering cycle using crypto.
In addition, the duo believes that North Korea could be following Iran’s lead in developing its own national cryptocurrency to further its efforts in evading sanctions. The country would then use the cryptocurrency anonymously under the “guise of a non-adversarial nation” in an attempt to cover their tracks and conceal the origin of the funds.
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Bitcoin Hits $24000 In Iran As Government Recognises Crypto Mining As An Industry

Recently, Iran have announced that they will start to recognise cryptocurrency mining as an industry.
This comes after an increased pressure on the country by the United States changing the economic sanctions. Along with this news comes the price of Bitcoin on the Iranian exchanges. He Price of Bitcoin in Iran is around $24000 at the time of writing.
The exchange platform in Iran, Exir has reported that a price of 1,020,000,000 IRR for just one Bitcoin.
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Source: Crypto Daily