Trading Bitcoin On Federal Reserve Computers Apparently Totes Uncool

Don't mine your coin while cashing your checks from The Fed.
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By Mike Cauldwell (https://www.casascius.com/photos.aspx) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

By Mike Cauldwell (https://www.casascius.com/photos.aspx) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

Here's something you don't see every day...

A former Federal Reserve employee was sentenced Friday to 12 months probation and a $5,000 fine after pleading guilty in October to installing unauthorized software on a computer server at the U.S. central bank.
Nicholas Berthaume, who as a communications analyst had access to computer servers at the Fed’s Board of Governors in Washington, installed software that connected to an online bitcoin network in order to earn units of the digital currency, according to a statement Monday from the central bank’s Office of Inspector General.

While it makes you wonder what Berthaume knows about monetary policy that we don't, it also prompts one to wonder at how dangerous it was to have Fed computers hooked up to the notoriously insecure world of Bitcoin trading.

And in case you think we're just being fearful old luddites...

Berthaume also “modified certain security safeguards so that he could remotely access the server from home,” the statement said. When confronted, he tried to cover up his actions by deleting the software; eventually he was fired and admitted guilt, the office said. His actions didn’t result in the loss of any Fed information, and the board has enhanced security since the incident, the internal watchdog said.

Yup, so Janet Yellen now belongs to the Blockchain. It's like Tron, but way more boring and incredibly fucking dangerous.

Cool.

Former Fed Employee Fined $5,000 for Using Computer for Bitcoin [Bloomberg]

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