Authorities arrested two men in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa’s Shangla district who they said were running the country’s biggest cryptocurrency mining farm.
The suspects were making and selling cryptocurrency, officials said. They also took commission on the sales of bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies.
The arrested suspects hailed from Lahore and Okara.
A cryptocurrency is a digital currency in which encryption techniques are used to regulate the generation of units of currency and verify the transfer of funds, while operating independently of a central bank.
Around 5,000 cryptocurrencies are currently being used across the world. Of them, bitcoin is on top having a worth of over $8,000.
In 2017, the State Bank of Pakistan declared the use and sale or purchase of cryptocurrency “illegal”.
Shangla Deputy Superintendent of Police Zahir Shah said the farm was being used to mine cryptocurrency which was sold on different websites. It was being controlled online from Okara, he added.
Shah said the farm had 65 servers and each server had 12 channels. He said the farm’s monthly electricity bill was Rs20,000.
FIA’s Assistant Director Mohammad Rizwan said the suspects had been arrested in the past as well.
One of them was arrested in Lahore in December 2018 with eight Bitcoin machines, according to the official. He was granted bail in February 2019.