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Description

The following detection identifies control.exe loading either a .cpl or .inf from a writable directory. This is related to CVE-2021-40444. During triage, review parallel processes, parent and child, for further suspicious behaviors. In addition, capture file modifications and analyze.

  • Type: TTP
  • Product: Splunk Enterprise, Splunk Enterprise Security, Splunk Cloud
  • Datamodel: Endpoint
  • Last Updated: 2021-09-08
  • Author: Michael Haag, Splunk
  • ID: 10423ac4-10c9-11ec-8dc4-acde48001122

ATT&CK

ID Technique Tactic
T1218.002 Control Panel Defense Evasion

| tstats `security_content_summariesonly` count min(_time) as firstTime max(_time) as lastTime from datamodel=Endpoint.Processes where (Processes.process_name=control.exe OR Processes.original_file_name=CONTROL.EXE) AND Processes.process IN ("*\\appdata\\*", "*\\windows\\temp\\*", "*\\programdata\\*") 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)` 
| `control_loading_from_world_writable_directory_filter`

Associated Analytic Story

How To Implement

To successfully implement this search you need to be ingesting information on process that include the name of the process responsible for the changes from your endpoints into the Endpoint datamodel in the Processes node. In addition, confirm the latest CIM App 4.20 or higher is installed and the latest TA for the endpoint product.

Required field

  • 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

Kill Chain Phase

  • Exploitation

Known False Positives

Limited false positives will be present as control.exe does not natively load from writable paths as defined. One may add .cpl or .inf to the command-line if there is any false positives. Tune as needed.

RBA

Risk Score Impact Confidence Message
80.0 80 100 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.

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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