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Description

The following detection identifies control.exe spawning from an office product. This detection identifies any Windows Office Product spawning control.exe. In malicious instances, the command-line of control.exe will contain a file path to a .cpl or .inf, related to CVE-2021-40444. In this instance, we narrow our detection down to the Office suite as a parent process. During triage, review all file modifications. Capture and analyze any artifacts on disk. review parallel and child processes to identify further suspicious behavior

  • Type: TTP
  • Product: Splunk Enterprise, Splunk Enterprise Security, Splunk Cloud
  • Datamodel: Endpoint
  • Last Updated: 2021-09-08
  • Author: Michael Haag, Splunk
  • ID: 053e027c-10c7-11ec-8437-acde48001122

ATT&CK

ID Technique Tactic
T1566.001 Spearphishing Attachment Initial Access

| tstats `security_content_summariesonly` count min(_time) as firstTime max(_time) as lastTime from datamodel=Endpoint.Processes where Processes.parent_process_name IN ("winword.exe","excel.exe","powerpnt.exe","mspub.exe","visio.exe","wordpad.exe","wordview.exe") Processes.process_name=control.exe by Processes.dest Processes.user Processes.parent_process Processes.process_name Processes.process Processes.process_id Processes.parent_process_id 
| `drop_dm_object_name(Processes)` 
| `security_content_ctime(firstTime)`
| `security_content_ctime(lastTime)`
| `office_spawning_control_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 should be present.

RBA

Risk Score Impact Confidence Message
80.0 80 100 An instance of $parent_process_name$ spawning $process_name$ was identified on endpoint $dest$ clicking a suspicious attachment.

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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