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The following analytic detects UpdateTrail events within AWS CloudTrail logs, aiming to identify attempts by attackers to evade detection by altering logging configurations. By updating CloudTrail settings with incorrect parameters, such as changing multi-regional logging to a single region, attackers can impair the logging of their activities across other regions. This behavior is crucial for Security Operations Centers (SOCs) to identify, as it indicates an adversary's intent to operate undetected within a compromised AWS environment. The impact of such evasion tactics is significant, potentially allowing malicious activities to proceed without being logged, thereby hindering incident response and forensic investigations.

  • Type: TTP
  • Product: Splunk Enterprise, Splunk Enterprise Security, Splunk Cloud

  • Last Updated: 2024-02-12
  • Author: Patrick Bareiss, Splunk
  • ID: f3eb471c-16d0-404d-897c-7653f0a78cba




ID Technique Tactic
T1562 Impair Defenses Defense Evasion
T1562.008 Disable or Modify Cloud Logs Defense Evasion
Kill Chain Phase
  • Exploitation
  • DE.CM
  • CIS 10
`amazon_security_lake` api.operation=UpdateTrail 
| fillnull 
| stats count min(_time) as firstTime max(_time) as lastTime by api.operation actor.user.account_uid actor.user.uid http_request.user_agent src_endpoint.ip cloud.region 
| rename actor.user.uid as user, src_endpoint.ip as src_ip, cloud.region as region, http_request.user_agent as user_agent, actor.user.account_uid as aws_account_id 
| `security_content_ctime(firstTime)`
| `security_content_ctime(lastTime)` 
| `asl_aws_defense_evasion_update_cloudtrail_filter`


The SPL above uses the following Macros:

:information_source: asl_aws_defense_evasion_update_cloudtrail_filter is a empty macro by default. It allows the user to filter out any results (false positives) without editing the SPL.

Required fields

List of fields required to use this analytic.

  • api.operation
  • actor.user.account_uid
  • actor.user.uid
  • http_request.user_agent
  • src_endpoint.ip
  • cloud.region

How To Implement

The detection is based on Amazon Security Lake events from Amazon Web Services (AWS), which is a centralized data lake that provides security-related data from AWS services. To use this detection, you must ingest CloudTrail logs from Amazon Security Lake into Splunk. To run this search, ensure that you ingest events using the latest version of Splunk Add-on for Amazon Web Services ( or the Federated Analytics App.

Known False Positives

While this search has no known false positives, it is possible that an AWS admin has updated cloudtrail logging. Please investigate this activity.

Associated Analytic Story


Risk Score Impact Confidence Message
90.0 100 90 User $user$ has updated a cloudtrail logging for account id $aws_account_id$ from IP $src_ip$

:information_source: The Risk Score is calculated by the following formula: Risk Score = (Impact * Confidence/100). Initial Confidence and Impact is set by the analytic author.


Test Dataset

Replay any dataset to Splunk Enterprise by using our tool or the UI. Alternatively you can replay a dataset into a Splunk Attack Range

source | version: 2