THIS IS A DEPRECATED DETECTION
This detection has been marked deprecated by the Splunk Threat Research team. This means that it will no longer be maintained or supported.
This search is used to detect attempts to use DNS tunneling, by calculating the length of responses to DNS TXT queries. Endpoints using DNS as a method of transmission for data exfiltration, command and control, or evasion of security controls can often be detected by noting unusually large volumes of DNS traffic. Deprecated because this detection should focus on DNS queries instead of DNS responses.
- Type: TTP
- Product: Splunk Enterprise, Splunk Enterprise Security, Splunk Cloud
- Datamodel: Network_Resolution
- Last Updated: 2020-07-21
- Author: Rico Valdez, Splunk
- ID: 05437c07-62f5-452e-afdc-04dd44815bb9
Kill Chain Phase
- Command & Control
- CIS 8
- CIS 12
- CIS 13
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 | tstats `security_content_summariesonly` count min(_time) as firstTime max(_time) as lastTime from datamodel=Network_Resolution where DNS.message_type=response AND DNS.record_type=TXT by DNS.src DNS.dest DNS.answer DNS.record_type | `drop_dm_object_name("DNS")` | eval anslen=len(answer) | search anslen>100 | `security_content_ctime(firstTime)` | `security_content_ctime(lastTime)` | rename src as "Source IP", dest as "Destination IP", answer as "DNS Answer" anslen as "Answer Length" record_type as "DNS Record Type" firstTime as "First Time" lastTime as "Last Time" count as Count | table "Source IP" "Destination IP" "DNS Answer" "DNS Record Type" "Answer Length" Count "First Time" "Last Time" | `detect_long_dns_txt_record_response_filter`
The SPL above uses the following Macros:
detect_long_dns_txt_record_response_filter is a empty macro by default. It allows the user to filter out any results (false positives) without editing the SPL.
List of fields required to use this analytic.
How To Implement
To successfully implement this search you need to ingest data from your DNS logs, or monitor DNS traffic using Stream, Bro or something similar. Specifically, this query requires that the DNS data model is populated with information regarding the DNS record type that is being returned as well as the data in the answer section of the protocol.
Known False Positives
It's possible that legitimate TXT record responses can be long enough to trigger this search. You can modify the packet threshold for this search to help mitigate false positives.
Associated Analytic Story
The Risk Score is calculated by the following formula: Risk Score = (Impact * Confidence/100). Initial Confidence and Impact is set by the analytic author.
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