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this detection was designed to identifies suspicious office documents that using macro code. Macro code is known to be one of the prevalent weaponization or attack vector of threat actor. This malicious macro code is embed to a office document as an attachment that may execute malicious payload, download malware payload or other malware component. It is really good practice to disable macro by default to avoid automatically execute macro code while opening or closing a office document files.

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

  • Last Updated: 2023-01-24
  • Author: Teoderick Contreras, Splunk
  • ID: b12c89bc-9d06-11eb-a592-acde48001122




ID Technique Tactic
T1566 Phishing Initial Access
T1566.001 Spearphishing Attachment Initial Access
Kill Chain Phase
  • Delivery
  • DE.CM
  • CIS 10
`sysmon` EventCode=7 parent_process_name IN ("WINWORD.EXE", "EXCEL.EXE", "POWERPNT.EXE","onenote.exe","onenotem.exe","onenoteviewer.exe","onenoteim.exe","msaccess.exe") ImageLoaded IN ("*\\VBE7INTL.DLL","*\\VBE7.DLL", "*\\VBEUI.DLL") 
| stats min(_time) as firstTime max(_time) as lastTime values(ImageLoaded) as AllImageLoaded count by Computer EventCode Image process_name ProcessId ProcessGuid 
| rename Computer as dest
| `security_content_ctime(firstTime)` 
| `security_content_ctime(lastTime)` 
| `office_document_executing_macro_code_filter`


The SPL above uses the following Macros:

:information_source: office_document_executing_macro_code_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.

  • ImageLoaded
  • AllImageLoaded
  • dest
  • EventCode
  • Image
  • process_name
  • ProcessId
  • ProcessGuid
  • _time

How To Implement

To successfully implement this search, you need to be ingesting logs with the process name and ImageLoaded (Like sysmon EventCode 7) from your endpoints. If you are using Sysmon, you must have at least version 6.0.4 of the Sysmon TA. Also be sure to include those monitored dll to your own sysmon config.

Known False Positives

Normal Office Document macro use for automation

Associated Analytic Story


Risk Score Impact Confidence Message
35.0 70 50 Office document executing a macro 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

source | version: 4