Florida Government Worker Arrested For Mining Bitcoin

March 14, 2018 5:13 pm Published by

The Florida Department of Law Enforcement (FDLE) has jailed a state employee at the state’s Department of Citrus (FDoC) for allegedly using official computers to mine cryptocurrencies, CoinDesk reported Wednesday.

A Tampa Bay Times report says the FDLE has jailed Matthew McDermott, an IT manager for the state government agency that oversees the state’s citrus industry, the report said.

It’s alleged by the FDLE McDermott used computers in the department to mine both bitcoin and litecoin, the report said. He has been charged with grand theft and official misconduct.

Further investigation revealed the citrus department utility bill surged more than 40 percent from October 2017 to January 2018, as cryptocurrency mining requires significant amounts of electricity because of high processing demands, CoinDesk reported.

The FDLE said McDermott had also used the office’s account to purchase 24 graphic processing units at a cost of around $22,000, according to the report. 

GPUs are commonly used for cryptocurrency mining given their ability to crunch numbers much faster than standard computer chips, the report said.

WN.com, Jack Durschlag

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