Sydney resident was sentenced to 15 months in prison and 300 hours of community service, after secretly using the power of the Australian State Scientific and Applied Research Organization (CSIRO) to mine cryptocurrency.
In 2018, an undisclosed man was hired as an IT contractor, and as a result, he gained access to the institution's servers and supercomputers, designed for various scientific research. The attacker conscientiously fulfilled his duties to support software and archive data, but at the same time decided to earn extra money and began to mine cryptocurrency.
According to local law enforcement estimates, in total, the unscrupulous contractor managed to extract cryptocurrency in the amount of Australian $ 9,400 (about RUB 500,000).
Australian Federal Police launched an investigation after CSIRO officers discovered a “serious infrastructure violation” and immediately notified authorities. In March 2018, police raided the then suspect's home and eventually seized a laptop and mobile phone.
In May 2019, this person was indicted in manipulating the computer programs of a federal government agency for the purpose of mining cryptocurrency. In February 2020, he pleaded guilty and was sentenced last week to 15 months in prison, as well as 300 hours of community service.
“Investigations estimated that the financial damage to CSIRO supercomputers was at least A $ 76,000,” AFP said in a statement. “This man's activities redirected the resources of a supercomputer that was doing important scientific research for the country, including Pulsar Data Array Analysis, medical research, and climate modeling work to measure the impact of climate change on the environment. The consequences are clear – out of greed, contractor CSIRO abused the trust of Australian taxpayers for personal gain. "