The recent discovery of a cryptocurrency mine in a campus of the National College of Technical Professional Education (Conalep) located in San Luis Potosí left many people with a doubt: How do you mine a cryptocurrency?
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The first point to understand why the finding of the Cyber Police in this school caused a stir is to explain that digital currency mining refers to creating new units of currency.
Each unit is a unique codewhich to be used within an operation must be decrypted and the transaction must be added to the blockchainor blockchain, the technology behind cryptocurrencies.
This is where digital currency mining comes in, which occurs when one or more computers are dedicated to deciphering the codes of existing units so that they can be used in some operation.
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The people who perform this task are rewarded with units of the cryptocurrency for which they are cracking code. However, performing this operation requires proper equipment.
The codes behind the cryptocurrency represent very complex mathematical operationsso solving them —in order to crack the code— requires a significant processing power.
This means that the computer used for this task you need the right parts (RAM, graphics cards, processors) to actually work for cryptocurrency mining as the code can only be solved oncewhich makes processing speed an essential factor.
On the other hand, this activity is strongly criticized by environmental activistssince processing power is inevitably tied to a higher power consumptionwhich to date continues to be produced with the burning of fossil fuels for the most part.
This means that the carbon footprint of digital currency miningthat is, the CO emissionstwo produced by this activity, becomes extremely high.
It is worth mentioning that cryptocurrency mining is not an illegal activity, although it was the Cyber Police of San Luis Potosí who discovered the mine.