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This analytic is to look for possible elevation control access using a common known process in linux platform to change the attribute and file ownership. This technique is commonly abused by adversaries, malware author and red teamers to gain persistence or privilege escalation on the target or compromised host. This common process is used to modify file attribute, file ownership or SUID. This tools can be used in legitimate purposes so filter is needed.

  • Type: Hunting
  • Product: Splunk Enterprise, Splunk Enterprise Security, Splunk Cloud
  • Datamodel: Endpoint
  • Last Updated: 2021-12-23
  • Author: Teoderick Contreras, Splunk
  • ID: 66ab15c0-63d0-11ec-9e70-acde48001122




ID Technique Tactic
T1548.001 Setuid and Setgid Privilege Escalation, Defense Evasion
T1548 Abuse Elevation Control Mechanism Privilege Escalation, Defense Evasion
Kill Chain Phase
  • Exploitation
  • DE.AE
  • CIS 10
| tstats `security_content_summariesonly` count min(_time) as firstTime max(_time) as lastTime from datamodel=Endpoint.Processes where Processes.process_name IN ("chmod", "chown", "fchmod", "fchmodat", "fchown", "fchownat", "fremovexattr", "fsetxattr", "lchown", "lremovexattr", "lsetxattr", "removexattr", "setuid", "setgid", "setreuid", "setregid", "chattr") OR Processes.process IN ("*chmod *", "*chown *", "*fchmod *", "*fchmodat *", "*fchown *", "*fchownat *", "*fremovexattr *", "*fsetxattr *", "*lchown *", "*lremovexattr *", "*lsetxattr *", "*removexattr *", "*setuid *", "*setgid *", "*setreuid *", "*setregid *", "*setcap *", "*chattr *") by Processes.dest Processes.user Processes.parent_process_name Processes.process_name Processes.process Processes.process_id Processes.parent_process_id Processes.process_guid 
| `drop_dm_object_name(Processes)` 
| `security_content_ctime(firstTime)` 
| `security_content_ctime(lastTime)` 
| `linux_common_process_for_elevation_control_filter`


The SPL above uses the following Macros:

:information_source: linux_common_process_for_elevation_control_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.process_name
  • Processes.process
  • Processes.process_id
  • 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

Administrator or network operator can execute this command. Please update the filter macros to remove false positives.

Associated Analytic Story


Risk Score Impact Confidence Message
9.0 30 30 A commandline $process$ with process $process_name$ on $dest$

: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

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