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The following analytic detects the use of tools that are commonly exploited by cybercriminals since these tools are usually associated with malicious activities such as unauthorized access, network scanning, or data exfiltration and pose a significant threat to an organization's security infrastructure. It also provides enhanced visibility into potential security threats and helps to proactively detect and respond to mitigate the risks associated with cybercriminal activities. This detection is made by examining the process activity on the host, specifically focusing on processes that are known to be associated with attacker tool names. This detection is important because it acts as an early warning system for potential security incidents that allows you to respond to security incidents promptly. False positives might occur due to legitimate administrative activities that can resemble malicious actions. You must develop a comprehensive understanding of typical endpoint activities and behaviors within the organization to accurately interpret and respond to the alerts generated by this analytic. This ensures a proper balance between precision and minimizing false positives.

  • Type: TTP
  • Product: Splunk Enterprise, Splunk Enterprise Security, Splunk Cloud
  • Datamodel: Endpoint
  • Last Updated: 2024-01-01
  • Author: Bhavin Patel, Splunk
  • ID: a51bfe1a-94f0-48cc-b4e4-16a110145893




ID Technique Tactic
T1036.005 Match Legitimate Name or Location Defense Evasion
T1036 Masquerading Defense Evasion
T1003 OS Credential Dumping Credential Access
T1595 Active Scanning Reconnaissance
Kill Chain Phase
  • Exploitation
  • Reconnaissance
  • DE.CM
  • CIS 10
| tstats `security_content_summariesonly` count min(_time) as firstTime max(_time) as lastTime values(Processes.process) as process values(Processes.parent_process) as parent_process from datamodel=Endpoint.Processes where Processes.dest!=unknown Processes.user!=unknown by Processes.dest Processes.user Processes.process_name Processes.process 
| `security_content_ctime(firstTime)` 
| `security_content_ctime(lastTime)` 
| `drop_dm_object_name(Processes)` 
| lookup attacker_tools attacker_tool_names AS process_name OUTPUT description 
| search description !=false
| `attacker_tools_on_endpoint_filter`


The SPL above uses the following Macros:

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


The SPL above uses the following Lookups:

Required fields

List of fields required to use this analytic.

  • Processes.dest
  • Processes.user
  • Processes.process_name
  • Processes.parent_process

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

Some administrator activity can be potentially triggered, please add those users to the filter macro.

Associated Analytic Story


Risk Score Impact Confidence Message
64.0 80 80 An attacker tool $process_name$,listed in attacker_tools.csv is executed on host $dest$ by User $user$. This process $process_name$ is known to do- $description$

: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