Crypto Mining Chips Now Under Tight Scrutiny – Korea Customs Service

Announcements, News | April 19, 2018 By:

The Korea Customs Service (KCS) has added cryptocurrency mining chips to its list of imports targeted for high scrutiny.

The KCS will check whether cryptocurrency mining chips being imported in South Korea have met safety conditions and received the approval of related government agencies, such as the National Radio Research Agency, a government body that sets standardization on technical regulations. The agency added that the extra measures will help prevent the entry of illegal products in the country.

The move came after the agency found that 454 pieces of cryptocurrency mining hardware were imported to Korea in November and December of last year. The equipment was, at the time, valued at 1.3 billion won ($1.2M USD). Due to its significant electricity consumption and associated heating, the usage of these mining machines draws concerns from the KCS whether they bring high possibility of fire incidents.

“We will continue to check on imported goods if they meet the requirements according to the law that is meant to protect the safety of the public and the environment,” said an official with the customs agency.

The move also came after South Korean authorities arrested 14 people from 13 different companies for illegally using cheap electricity to mine cryptocurrencies at industrial complexes. The companies had each reportedly installed between 100-350 bitcoin miners within the premises of their industrial complexes, which the local police say is in violation of rules regarding factory use.