Two Russian citizens are facing prosecution for their alleged role in infecting state-controlled computers with a program that would mine cryptocurrency.
The two suspects, which went unnamed in the report by local news outlet Tass, allegedly infected computers at state organizations with a program that would mine cryptocurrency via a web browser.
According to the report, one of the suspects from the city of Kurgan created a botnet capable of infecting computer hardware across the country, while the second suspect was charged with infecting computers at the state water utility JSC Rostovvodokanal.
Nikolay Murashov, Deputy Director of the National Coordination Center for Computer Incidents, said at a press conference on Monday,
In Russia, there have been two cases recently when people were brought to criminal responsibility for getting access to computers [of state organizations] and using them to mine cryptocurrencies.
Up to 80% of the computer’s free power can be used to generate virtual coins, and a legitimate user may not even know about it.
While the report does not indicate what coin the suspects were mining, the program was able to operate through web browser pages.