An internet authority in East China’s Zhejiang province has identified in July 4,699 IP addresses in the province that were involved with cryptocurrency mining, and among them 183 addresses were related to 78 state-owned entities, according to a Tuesday article published on the website of China’s Central Commission for Discipline Inspection (CCDI), the country’s anti-corruption watchdog.

Fast facts

  • In September, authorities in Zhejiang formed four joint inspection teams to randomly raid 20 state-owned entities with 36 IP addresses, and the on-site inspections found that 14 of the entities were taking the initiative to mine crypto.
  • Additionally, the inspections found that a total of 34 state-owned entities took the initiative to mine crypto, while 32 entities were forced to mine as their computers or internet devices were infected with Trojans, according to the CCDI article.
  • The local authorities subsequently ceased 68 mining machines that were mining 12 kinds of cryptocurrencies including Bitcoin and Ether, and penalized 48 people — 21 of whom worked at state-owned entities or Communist Party agencies — who were found to have mined crypto using public resources.
  • Zhejiang is not the only province that has busted state-owned entities for crypto mining activities. In early October, Jiangsu province’s communication watchdog discovered 4,502 IP addresses engaging with crypto mining in the province, 21% of which were from state-owned institutions.
  • In November, Wei Meng, a spokesperson for the National Development and Reform Commission, the country’s top economic planner, said at a press briefing the authorities would focus on raiding industrial clustered mining activities and those carried out by state-owned entities. If the authorities find an entity that has participated in mining crypto, it could be subject to punitive electricity charges for future operations. Meanwhile, South China’s Hainan province has also announced a plan to increase electricity prices for those who have carried out crypto mining activities in December.
  • China has been actively clamping down on crypto mining since earlier this year. On Sept. 24, the NDRC jointly issued a notice with 10 other authorities to wipe out crypto mining nationwide.
  • Even so, some miners seemed to have still secretly remained in operation in China. A Chinese cybersecurity company, Qihoo 360, stated that it detected an average of 109,000 active crypto mining IP addresses per day in November.