The U.S. Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has sent an official notice, dated Feb. 15, to a resident of Brooklyn, New York, Victor Rosario, citing that his Bitcoin (BTC) miner was causing harmful interference to T-Mobile’s broadband network.
The “Notification of Harmful Interference” stated that the device was “generating spurious emissions on frequencies” for T-Mobile’s network. Continued use of his Antminer s5 Bitcoin Miner in a way that caused harmful interference would be breaking federal laws subject to penalties, “including, but not limited to, substantial monetary fines, ‘in rem’ arrest action to seize the offending radio equipment, and criminal sanctions including imprisonment.”
The notice contains a caveat clarifying that not all Antminer s5 devices generate harmful interference, and suggesting that devices originally compliant with federal laws on radio frequency interference can be modified to make them non-compliant.
Victor Rosario has 20 days from the date of the warning, which was delivered Feb. 15, to tell the FCC if he is still using the device, provide all labeling information, detail what he will do to prevent a repeat incident, and provide proof of purchase for the miner.
Jessica Rosenworcel, the commissioner of the FCC, tweeted the official notice with the comment that it “all seems so very 2018.”
Okay, this @FCC letter has it all: #bitcoin mining, computing power needed for #blockchain computation and #wireless #broadband interference. It all seems so very 2018. https://t.co/EaXxmBAMXH
— Jessica Rosenworcel (@JRosenworcel) February 15, 2018
Elsewhere in the US in Washington state, Bitcoin mining overloaded the electrical infrastructure of an entire county due to the increasing numbers of miners flocking to take advantage of Washington’s cheap electricity.
In Iceland, cryptocurrency mining is set to use more power this year than all of the 340,000 Icelandic residents’ personal use put together.