Since 2012, England and Walse have experienced a record-breaking 75% surge in the number of electricity thefts, which is allegedly used for cannabis farms and cryptocurrency mining.
While talking to a renowned media outlet, BBC, the spokesperson from the National Police Chiefs’ Council (NPCC) raised concern over the rising number of electricity theft, calling it “a growing problem.”
He said, “It is a concerning crime as it can put people’s safety at risk and support the activity of serious organised crime.”
The survey from 42 police forces across England and Wales indicates the record number of offenses in electricity theft.
In May 2021, West Midlands Police uncovered a Bitcoin mining operation at an industrial estate in Sandwell, where approximately 100 computers were connected to an illicitly accessed electricity source.
Charlie Pugsley, Assistant commissioner at London Fire Brigade, told BBC that electricity theft could be due to “anything from cannabis cultivation to Bitcoin mining.”
However, some people also cited the rising cost of living due to the Russia-Ukraine war in these two countries as a reason that forces netizens to steal electricity. However, stealing electricity is not advisable as it carries the risk of fatality.
During the pandemic, criminal organizations saw a rise in the practice of cryptocurrency laundering, which entails the utilization of high-performance computers to generate digital currencies like Bitcoin. Chainalysis, a data company, has reported this trend.
Bitcoin mining requires an enormous amount of energy to compute complex equations. The process helps to create new bitcoins while securing the network through the validation process at the same time.