Try in Splunk Security Cloud


The following analytic detects the use of two specific tools, wmic and Powershell, to create a shadow copy to identify potential threats earlier and take appropriate actions to mitigate the risks. This detection is made by a Splunk query that searches for processes in the Endpoint.Processes data model where either the process name contains "wmic" or "Powershell" and the process command contains "shadowcopy" and "create". This detection is important because it suggests that an attacker is attempting to manipulate or access data in an unauthorized manner, which can lead to data theft, data manipulation, or other malicious activities. Attackers might use shadow copies to backup and exfiltrate sensitive data or to hide their tracks by restoring files to a previous state after an attack. Next steps include reviewing the user associated with the process, the process name, the original file name, the process command, and the destination of the process. Additionally, examine any relevant on-disk artifacts and review other concurrent processes to determine the source of the attack.

  • Type: TTP
  • Product: Splunk Enterprise, Splunk Enterprise Security, Splunk Cloud
  • Datamodel: Endpoint
  • Last Updated: 2021-09-16
  • Author: Patrick Bareiss, Splunk
  • ID: 2ed8b538-d284-449a-be1d-82ad1dbd186b




ID Technique Tactic
T1003.003 NTDS Credential Access
T1003 OS Credential Dumping Credential Access
Kill Chain Phase
  • Exploitation
  • DE.CM
  • CIS 10
| tstats `security_content_summariesonly` count min(_time) as firstTime max(_time) as lastTime from datamodel=Endpoint.Processes where `process_wmic` OR `process_powershell` Processes.process=*shadowcopy* Processes.process=*create* by Processes.user Processes.process_name Processes.original_file_name Processes.parent_process_name Processes.process Processes.dest 
| `drop_dm_object_name(Processes)` 
| `security_content_ctime(firstTime)`
| `security_content_ctime(lastTime)` 
| `creation_of_shadow_copy_with_wmic_and_powershell_filter`


The SPL above uses the following Macros:

:information_source: creation_of_shadow_copy_with_wmic_and_powershell_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.

  • _time
  • Processes.dest
  • Processes.user
  • Processes.parent_process_name
  • Processes.parent_process
  • Processes.original_file_name
  • Processes.process_name
  • Processes.process
  • Processes.process_id
  • Processes.parent_process_path
  • Processes.process_path
  • Processes.parent_process_id

How To Implement

The detection is based on data that originates from Endpoint Detection and Response (EDR) agents. These agents are designed to provide security-related telemetry from the endpoints where the agent is installed. To implement this search, you must ingest logs that contain the process GUID, process name, and parent process. Additionally, you must ingest complete command-line executions. These logs must be processed using the appropriate Splunk Technology Add-ons that are specific to the EDR product. The logs must also be mapped to the Processes node of the Endpoint data model. Use the Splunk Common Information Model (CIM) to normalize the field names and speed up the data modeling process.

Known False Positives

Legtimate administrator usage of wmic to create a shadow copy.

Associated Analytic Story


Risk Score Impact Confidence Message
81.0 90 90 An instance of $parent_process_name$ spawning $process_name$ was identified on endpoint $dest$ by user $user$ attempting to create a shadow copy to perform offline password cracking.

: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: 3