it wasn't Bitcoin mining! All 3,800 PlayStation played FIFA to get prizes and resell them​

Entrepreneur en Español 1 hr ago

Just a week ago, the Security Service of Ukraine reported that they discovered what looked like a Bitcoin mining farm . However, the investigation revealed that the 3,800 PlayStation 4 (PS4) consoles found at the site were actually programmed to play the FIFA video game automatically. The goal was to earn FIFA Ultimate Team Coins and Cards and then resell them to passionate gamers .

© Security Service of Ukraine

The news went viral and caused a great impact, as the equipment also worked with stolen electricity , avoiding estimated payments of between 186 and 260 thousand dollars per month.

What caused the most stir was the news that Bitcoin or other cryptocurrencies could be mined with a PS4 (or several, in this case). One of those who questioned this information was the local media Delo , where they noticed that in the photos of the report discs are seen coming out of some of the equipment .

AAMprUd.jpg© Provided by Entrepreneur

On the left you can see discs coming out of some of the 3,800 PlayStation 4 consoles that were mistaken for a Bitcoin mine. Image via Security Service of Ukraine .

Most of the equipment belonged to the economic version of the PlayStation 4 , called Slim and with power of only 1.84 teraflops, although they do not rule out that there were also others from the Pro version, with 4.2 teraflops of power.

According to specialists, none of these equipment would have sufficient capacity to mine Bitcoin, and if they did, it would not be a significant amount, not even if almost 4 thousand devices are used at the same time.

The same medium points out that the requisitioned PS4s would have been programmed to automatically play the FIFA video game over and over again.

The goal would be to earn in-game coins that could then be exchanged for real money or Ultimate Team cards . These cards are very popular with FIFA fans, and if you get a rare one you can resell it with a good profit margin.

Another quite profitable option in the gamer market is to accumulate enough coins and / or cards to be able to sell the player account in its entirety.
from the government website:

SBU exposes massive crypto mining in Ukraine​

14:00, 8 July 2021
  • Protection of critical infrastructure facilities
In the city of Vinnytsia, the SBU has exposed and documented a large-scale electricity theft. The offenders mined cryptocurrency in one of the former premises of JSC Vinnytsiaoblenerho. Ukrainian law enforcement seized almost 5,000 computers. It is the largest underground crypto farm.

SBU officers established that the residents of Kyiv and Vinnytsia cities set up illegal crypto farm in a former warehouse of JSC Vinnytsiaoblenerho, located in the facility's industrial park.

The offenders stole electricity of JSC Vinnytsiaoblenerho. To conceal their activities, they used electricity meters that did not show a real energy consumption.

According to preliminary estimates, the monthly losses to the state ranged from UAH 5 to 7 m. (USD 186,200 to 259,300). However, such illegal activity could lead to power surges and left people without electricity.
The SBU initiated criminal proceedings for the theft of water, electricity or thermal energy through its unauthorized use.

During the authorized searches of the offenders’ residences and crypto farm, law enforcement seized:
  • 3,800 game consoles;
  • over 500 graphics cards;
  • 50 processors;
  • draft documentation on electricity consumption;
  • notebooks, phones, flash drives.
Currently, investigative actions are underway to identify all the people involved in illegal activities. Involvement of the officials of JSC Vinnytsiaoblenerho is being checked.

The operation was carried out by the SBU Department for CI Protection of State Economic Interests jointly with the SBU Office in Vinnytsia region and the Main National Police Investigation Department, under the supervision of the Prosecutor General's Office.


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