Chinese-owned bitcoin mining operations in the United States are causing national security concerns due to their proximity to critical sites and the potential for cyber threats.
The New York Times reports that there are some mining facilities close to critical sites such as the Microsoft data center for the Pentagon’s Air Force nuclear’s missile base in Wyoming USA. Officials in the U.S. fear Chinese espionage activities at these places.
These mining operations began after China banned bitcoin mining in 2021. These individuals sometimes maintain connections with the Chinese Communist Party or state-owned companies which may be kept concealed through multiple layers of companies.
Texas has turned out to be a haven for Chinese-linked Bitcoin mining, with some US states having restrictions but Texas offers incentives. This might pose a threat to the power grid or essential infrastructure.
A new concern has recently been raised in a report related to a potential cyber strike on the US infrastructure by China in case a major conflict arose.
Bitmain is a Chinese manufacturer, selling machines to these mining farms. Bitmain itself is not directly linked with Beijing. The company’s exports to the US, however, went through a subsidiary in a party building that is used to host communist party guests.
Chinese-owned bitcoin mines in the U.S., although not under direct government control, are causing security concerns due to their proximity to important sites and the potential for cyber threats.