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This analytic identifies attempts to access the Remote ShellServlet on a web server, which is utilized to execute commands. Such activity is commonly linked with web shells and other forms of malicious behavior. It was specifically detected on a Confluence server in relation to CVE-2023-22518 and CVE-2023-22515. Activities preceding access to the shell servlet include the addition of a plugin to Confluence. Additionally, it is advisable to monitor for ShellServlet?act=3, ShellServlet, or obfuscated variations such as Sh3llServlet1.

  • Type: TTP
  • Product: Splunk Enterprise, Splunk Enterprise Security, Splunk Cloud
  • Datamodel: Web
  • Last Updated: 2024-04-02
  • Author: Michael Haag, Splunk
  • ID: c2a332c3-24a2-4e24-9455-0e80332e6746




ID Technique Tactic
T1190 Exploit Public-Facing Application Initial Access
Kill Chain Phase
  • Delivery
  • DE.CM
  • CIS 13
| tstats count min(_time) as firstTime max(_time) as lastTime from datamodel=Web where Web.url IN ("*plugins/servlet/*") Web.status=200 by Web.http_user_agent, Web.status Web.http_method, Web.url, Web.url_length, Web.src, Web.dest, sourcetype 
| `drop_dm_object_name("Web")` 
| `security_content_ctime(firstTime)` 
| `security_content_ctime(lastTime)` 
| `web_remote_shellservlet_access_filter`


The SPL above uses the following Macros:

:information_source: web_remote_shellservlet_access_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.

  • Web.http_user_agent
  • Web.status
  • Web.http_method
  • Web.url
  • Web.url_length
  • Web.src
  • Web.dest
  • sourcetype

How To Implement

This analytic necessitates the collection of web data, which can be achieved through Splunk Stream or by utilizing the Splunk Add-on for Apache Web Server. No additional configuration is required for this analytic.

Known False Positives

False positives may occur depending on the web server's configuration. If the web server is intentionally configured to utilize the Remote ShellServlet, then the detections by this analytic would not be considered true positives.

Associated Analytic Story


Risk Score Impact Confidence Message
81.0 90 90 An attempt to access the Remote ShellServlet on a web server was detected. The source IP is $src$ and the destination hostname is $dest$.

: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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