BIT Mining Limited – a China-based company backed by state-run entities with histories of cyber attacks – invested over $25,000,000 into a Texas-based bitcoin mining operation.
The partnership between the Chinese company and a Texas-based subsidiary of Bitdeer on “Bitcoin mining” – the process by which new bitcoins are entered into circulation – will lead to the construction of the Texas Mining Center.
BIT Mining, formerly known as 500.com, has extensive financial and personnel ties to the Chinese Communist Party.
Reuters has identified “Chinese state-backed chipmaker Tsinghua Unigroup as a major shareholder,” amassing nearly one-third of the company by 2018 and counting its co-president as the company’s chairman. Tsinghua Unigroup is a subsidiary of Tsinghua Holdings, a state-owned company funded by Tsinghua University in Beijing. The alma mater of Xi Jinping, Tsinghua University has a “clear connection between them and the state administration for technology and industry in discussions on what [they] can do to help the national security,” according to former Senior Intelligence Officer in the Defense Intelligence Agency and State Department Official Nicholas Eftimiades.
The school has even launched cyberattacks against the U.S. government, according to the U.S. State Department:
“Tsinghua University has a cyber group called the Blue Lotus Group, which is students, and – but they’ve also – we’ve had millions of hits out at Tsinghua in – cyber hits through Africa, the state of Alaska, against the Alaska government, multiple countries coming out of Tsinghua. So their cyber component is pretty aggressive in collection.”
Independent studies have confirmed the institution “was the origin of multiple recent cyber-espionage campaigns targeting groups such as the Tibetan community in India and the Alaskan state government.”
What’s more, the firm’s Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) filing reveals one of 500.com’s directors studied at the Central Party School of the Communist Party of China.