Lei Hua, a school teacher in China, had reportedly set up his own ethereum (ETH) mining operation at the school where he worked. Last month, Hua was fired from his job because he had been using the school’s electricity to mine the cryptocurrency.

Mining Operation Started From Home

According to the South China Morning Post (SCMP), Hua had been secretly mining ether on school property for almost a year, and the school’s management received an electricity bill of 14,700 Chinese yuan (appr. $2,120) – which may have been significantly higher than what a school normally pays for its power consumption.

The high school where Hua had been teaching at is located in China’s central province, Hunan.

He first began mining ether from his home computer in June of 2017 after purchasing crypto mining hardware for 10,000 CNY (appr. $1440). The relatively small-scale ether mining operation consumed an average of 21 kilowatt-hour of electricity each day.

Secretly Mining Ether For A Year

In an attempt to save money on his electricity bill, Hua shifted the mining machine to his high school. He also used the school’s computer lab to install seven more mining computers.

When a school employee asked Hua why the electricity bill was so high, he claimed it was due to overusing heaters and air conditioners.

Almost a year went by before Hua was finally caught, and during this time, he helped the school’s deputy headmaster in buying a mining machine – which was also installed on school property.

However, the county government’s officials have reportedly seized the mining machines and the cryptocurrency earned by Hua and the deputy headmaster. The amount they earned from their crypto mining activity has not been disclosed.

Notably, the world’s largest mining operations are based in China as Bitmain Technologies, the leading manufacturer of ASICs for crypto mining, is based in the nation’s capital city, Beijing.

Although digital currencies are very popular, Chinese authorities have been clamping down on crypto-related activity – which includes curbing the country’s extensive mining operations.

Airdrops And Pump-And-Dump Schemes

China’s government is concerned about the serious risks involved in digital currency trading and investing as there have been a large number of scams associated with their use.

As CryptoGlobe reported recently, China’s central bank has begun to crack down on crypto firms that are conducting airdrops. Chinese regulators suspect that many companies located abroad are targeting the country’s resident with “giveaways”, or airdrops.

After airdropping tokens to unsuspecting users, these crypto firms are reportedly making quick profits by selling their supply of the tokens via pump-and-dump schemes in secondary markets.