With Iran’s ban on cryptocurrency mining, local authorities are seizing 7K rigs
The Iranian provincial police continue to hunt down cryptocurrency miners large and small with information that they have confiscated more than 7,000 oil rigs on an operating farm in the capital, Tehran.
Police have arrested cryptocurrency miners working in an abandoned factory, according to a report by the country’s state media, the Islamic Republic News Agency (IRNA), on Tuesday. The country’s network experts estimate that miners working at full capacity will account for around 4% of the average daily energy consumption in Iran.
Tehran police chief General Hossein Rahimi said authorities had found another 3,000 cryptocurrency miners in the Iranian capital in the past 48 hours, with police raiding 50 locations. He added that the discovery of the 7,000 rigs farm was the largest and most important drag on the country’s energy use to date.
This activity comes after Iranian President Hassan Rouhani announced in May that it would ban Bitcoin (BTC) and cryptocurrency mining in the country by September to ensure Iranians can use electricity in the summer.
While the arrest of more than 7,000 miners may attract more attention from the authorities, the police are also cracking down on the little guys – miners who illegally operate electricity and whose users have to pay heavy fines. An IRNA report said today that police found four miners in a house in Pakdasht, southeast of the capital. Authorities measured the household’s electricity consumption externally before testing the mining rigs.
Connected: Iranian police seized a batch of 117 illegal cryptocurrency mining machines
Before the energy crisis in Iran led the government to crack down on energy-guzzling miners, many in the country seemed more open to the crypto industry. In 2019, lawmakers gave the green light to mining cryptocurrencies as an industrial activity that requires miners to be licensed and regulated. However, any use of the country’s power grid is closely monitored as Iran faces blackouts and blackouts and miners are often the target.