The MalwareHunterTeam shared on Twitter its findings of a ransomware that asks its victim to fire up the popular battle royale game Playerunknown's Battlegrounds (PUBG) in order to decrypt their files. Simply called "PUBG Ransomware," the malicious program opens a window that displays a badly written message that asks the victim to play one hour of PUBG. However, it also subsequently displays a code to enter into the program that will also decrypt the hostage files.
The ransomware is evidently some sort of joke. It only encrypts files on the Windows desktop and, according to Bleeping Computer, only checks that the PUBG executable is run; it doesn’t actually check that the game runs for one hour. The Virustotal database shows that 25 of 66 tested antivirus softwares will detect PUBG Ransomware.
But to be extremely clear: Do not try this at home!
Although this ransomware appears to be just a bit of hilarity, and there is no evidence it is circulating, protecting yourself from ransomware should be a serious consideration. There were several high-profile cases of ransomware outbreaks in 2017, including NotPetya and WannaCry. One of the easiest ways to gain some level of protection against ransomware on Windows 10 is by using the built-in Controlled folder access feature. The feature restricts access of folders that you specify to whitelisted apps of your choice. This is meant to prevent folders from getting encrypted should a ransomware begin executing on your computer.