There’s A New Malware That Locks Your Files Unless You Play PUBG

There’s A New Malware That Locks Your Files Unless You Play PUBG

A new malware locks infected computers’ files unless they fire up PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds. Unlike other ransomware, PUBG Ransomware doesn’t want infected users’ money; it just wants them to enjoy a game of Battlegrounds.

PUBG Ransomeware. Image: Bleeping Computer (Lawrence Abrams)

MalwareHunterTeam first discovered the malware, which BleepingComputer originally reported on. When a computer is infected by ransomware, the software makes its files inaccessible until the computer user does something in exchange. A message typically explains the ransom, which, in some instances, can be up to millions of dollars.

PUBG Ransomeware’s note reads: “Your files is encrypred [sic] by PUBG Ransomeware! But don’t worry! It is not that hard to unlock it. I don’t want money! Just play PUBG 1Hours [sic]!”

Malware experts have confirmed to me that PUBG Ransomeware actually does lock down computers’ files, but it’s pretty easy to get around. The ransomware only encrypts users’ desktop files and unlocks them after three minutes of a game of Battlegrounds as opposed to the stated hour, which is about the amount of time it takes to get headshotted in Battlegrounds‘ more populated areas. Also, according to malware expert Lawrence Abrams, there are a few other easy workarounds for folks who don’t want to play Battlegrounds (maybe because they prefer Fortnite). For starters, the ransomware provides an unlock code if you just can’t be bothered. Abrams also added that, since it looks like PUBG Ransomeware is still in development, “It is unsure if it will ever be spread or is simply being made as a joke.”

Let’s be real, though: A few of us might be secretly hoping PUBG Ransomeware gets mainstream so we have an excuse to fire the game up at work.


  • Wait, it only encrypts desktop files? My precious shortcuts! /s

    I’m more curious if it checks for a PUBG installation before it acts… no way I’d pay $30 just to get my desktop files back. Then again, you could probably refund it fairly easily…

    • Having dealt with a vast range of computer users, I can assure you that around 90% of users actually keep more than shortcuts on the desktop. The types of files range from temporary crap like a form they needed to fill in once, to precious data like family photos or business financial records.
      In past crypto malware events, we had one person who ONLY wanted one single file back off the desktop. Paid for the Dr Web rescue pack for that one file.

      • Oh, I know. We have glass-walled meeting rooms where I work, and every time a Project Manager puts their laptop on the projector I cringe at the full-screen grid of word documents, PDFs and spreadsheets that is their desktop. I don’t understand how people can be productive in that mess…

  • “Sorry mum i cant do my homework until i play some PUBG because all my files are locked”

    haha i need this malware for steam in general

  • Lots of morons talking about “what if they don’t want to play” – I wanna know what if they don’t own the game? Clearly the entire things a joke, especially with it targeting desktops and providing an unlock code to circumvent demands.

  • What if I don’t want to play a trashy buggy game?
    I would put money on this being a desperate cry from some hardcore fan to claw back some player base from Fortnite and other battle royale games

  • Reminds me of the w32hoots virus which would spam your printer with pictures of the “orly” owl.

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