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Attackers leverage an existing Windows binary, attrib.exe, to mark specific as hidden by using specific flags so that the victim does not see the file. The search looks for specific command-line arguments to detect the use of attrib.exe to hide files.

  • Type: TTP
  • Product: Splunk Enterprise, Splunk Enterprise Security, Splunk Cloud
  • Datamodel: Endpoint
  • Last Updated: 2020-07-21
  • Author: Bhavin Patel, Splunk
  • ID: c77162d3-f93c-45cc-80c8-22f6b5264g9f


ID Technique Tactic
T1222 File and Directory Permissions Modification Defense Evasion
T1222.001 Windows File and Directory Permissions Modification Defense Evasion

| tstats `security_content_summariesonly` count min(_time) values(Processes.process) as process max(_time) as lastTime from datamodel=Endpoint.Processes where Processes.process_name=attrib.exe (Processes.process=*+h*) by Processes.parent_process Processes.process_name Processes.user Processes.dest 
| `drop_dm_object_name("Processes")` 
| `security_content_ctime(firstTime)`
| `hiding_files_and_directories_with_attrib_exe_filter` 

Associated Analytic Story

How To Implement

You must be ingesting data that records process activity from your hosts to populate the Endpoint data model in the Processes node. You must also be ingesting logs with both the process name and command line from your endpoints. The command-line arguments are mapped to the "process" field in the Endpoint data model.

Required field

  • _time
  • Processes.process
  • Processes.process_name
  • Processes.parent_process
  • Processes.user
  • Processes.dest

Kill Chain Phase

  • Actions on Objectives

Known False Positives

Some applications and users may legitimately use attrib.exe to interact with the files.


Risk Score Impact Confidence Message
72.0 90 80 Attrib.exe with +h flag to hide files on $dest$ executed by $user$ is detected.


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