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Iceland massively steals computers from data centers – presumably, for a cheap mining here

The area near the airport of Keflavik (Peninsula Reykjanes), where the first equipment was stolen in December 2017
The area near the airport of Keflavik (Peninsula Reykjanes), where the first equipment was stolen in December 2017

In December 2017 and January 2018, Iceland committed four major thefts of powerful computers from data centers. According to local authorities, more than 600 computers worth about $ 2 million were stolen (about 11 million rubles).

Authorities initially reported only one theft, which occurred on the night of 5 to 6 December 2017 – then the criminals stole 600 video cards and 100 processors for a total of about 200 thousand dollars – and hoped that they would be able to track down intruders on their own. On February 18, it was already known about three thefts, later authorities told that there were four.

During the investigation, 11 people were detained, two of them are still under arrest. Some of them managed to track down due to the surveillance cameras that were in the data center Advania: they also stole equipment, including hard drives, but the user data was not affected.

According to the Reykjanes police representative, a series of computer equipment thefts are unprecedented for Iceland, and the group of criminals is very well organized. To track down intruders, law enforcement agencies in Iceland have already begun to monitor unusual spikes in electricity consumption and have called on local Internet service providers to report a sharp increase in traffic, but so far no trace has been found.

Almost the whole of Iceland (340 thousand people) enjoys renewable energy from hydroelectric power stations, geothermal stations and windmills. Cheap electricity has become a bait for mining companies: according to the local energy company HS Orka, in 2018 in Iceland, electricity consumption by miners will exceed the needs of other residents of the country.

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