Australian Government Employee Charged with Mining Crypto at Work

An Australian government employee has been charged after being caught mining cryptocurrency at work. The employee was charged over his misuse of government IT systems for mining for personal gain. According to the media release by the Australian Federal Police, the profits from the alleged mining operation are estimated to be worth more than AU$9,000 (US$6,184). The AFP officers conducted a search of the man’s Sydney home on Tuesday, 5 March 2018, and seized a personal laptop, personal phone, employee ID cards and data files.

The unnamed employee will attend a local court over two charges – unauthorized modification of data to cause impairment and unauthorized modification of restricted data – under the country’s Criminal Code Act, according to the AFP. Reportedly the charges he faces carry a maximum penalty of 10 years imprisonment and two years imprisonment. AFPs acting commander and manager of cybercrime operations, Chris Goldsmid, described the alleged crime as “very serious,” explaining:

“Australian taxpayers put their trust in public officials to perform vital roles for our community with the utmost integrity. Any alleged criminal conduct which betrays this trust for personal gain will be investigated and prosecuted.”