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Description

The following hunting detection identifies rundll32.exe with control_rundll within the command-line, loading a .cpl or another file type. Developed in relation to CVE-2021-40444. Rundll32.exe can also be used to execute Control Panel Item files (.cpl) through the undocumented shell32.dll functions Control_RunDLL and Control_RunDLLAsUser. Double-clicking a .cpl file also causes rundll32.exe to execute. \ This is written to be a bit more broad by not including .cpl. \ During triage, review parallel processes to identify any further suspicious behavior.

  • Type: Hunting
  • Product: Splunk Enterprise, Splunk Enterprise Security, Splunk Cloud
  • Datamodel: Endpoint
  • Last Updated: 2021-09-08
  • Author: Michael Haag, Splunk
  • ID: c8e7ced0-10c5-11ec-8b03-acde48001122

Annotations

ATT&CK

ATT&CK

ID Technique Tactic
T1218 System Binary Proxy Execution Defense Evasion
T1218.011 Rundll32 Defense Evasion
Kill Chain Phase
  • Exploitation
NIST
  • DE.AE
CIS20
  • CIS 10
CVE
ID Summary CVSS
CVE-2021-40444    
1
2
3
4
5
6
| tstats `security_content_summariesonly` count min(_time) as firstTime max(_time) as lastTime from datamodel=Endpoint.Processes where `process_rundll32` Processes.process=*Control_RunDLL*  by Processes.dest Processes.user Processes.parent_process_name Processes.process_name Processes.process Processes.process_id Processes.parent_process_id Processes.original_file_name 
| `drop_dm_object_name(Processes)` 
| `security_content_ctime(firstTime)` 
| `security_content_ctime(lastTime)` 
| `rundll32_control_rundll_hunt_filter`

Macros

The SPL above uses the following Macros:

:information_source: rundll32_control_rundll_hunt_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.

  • 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

This is a hunting detection, meant to provide a understanding of how voluminous control_rundll is within the environment.

Associated Analytic Story

RBA

Risk Score Impact Confidence Message
15.0 30 50 An instance of $parent_process_name$ spawning $process_name$ was identified on endpoint $dest$ by user $user$ attempting to load a suspicious file from disk.

: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.

Reference

Test Dataset

Replay any dataset to Splunk Enterprise by using our replay.py tool or the UI. Alternatively you can replay a dataset into a Splunk Attack Range

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