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This detection identifies failure attempts to delete groups. We want to identify when a group is attempting to be deleted, but either access is denied, there is a conflict or there is no group. This is indicative of administrators performing an action, but also could be suspicious behavior occurring. Review parallel IAM events - recently added users, new groups and so forth.

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

  • Last Updated: 2023-11-07
  • Author: Michael Haag, Splunk
  • ID: 723b861a-92eb-11eb-93b8-acde48001122




ID Technique Tactic
T1098 Account Manipulation Persistence, Privilege Escalation
Kill Chain Phase
  • Installation
  • Exploitation
  • DE.AE
  • CIS 10
`cloudtrail` eventName=DeleteGroup errorCode IN (NoSuchEntityException,DeleteConflictException, AccessDenied) (userAgent!=* 
| stats count min(_time) as firstTime max(_time) as lastTime values(requestParameters.groupName) as group_name by src eventName eventSource aws_account_id errorCode errorMessage userAgent eventID awsRegion userIdentity.principalId user_arn 
| `security_content_ctime(firstTime)` 
| `security_content_ctime(lastTime)` 
| `aws_iam_failure_group_deletion_filter`


The SPL above uses the following Macros:

:information_source: aws_iam_failure_group_deletion_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.

  • _time
  • eventName
  • userAgent
  • errorCode
  • requestParameters.groupName

How To Implement

The Splunk AWS Add-on and Splunk App for AWS is required to utilize this data. The search requires AWS Cloudtrail logs.

Known False Positives

This detection will require tuning to provide high fidelity detection capabilties. Tune based on src addresses (corporate offices, VPN terminations) or by groups of users. Not every user with AWS access should have permission to delete groups (least privilege).

Associated Analytic Story


Risk Score Impact Confidence Message
5.0 10 50 User $user_arn$ has had mulitple failures while attempting to delete groups from $src$

: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: 2