Adversaries may create a new process with an existing token to escalate privileges and bypass access controls. Processes can be created with the token and resulting security context of another user using features such as
Creating processes with a token not associated with the current user may require the credentials of the target user, specific privileges to impersonate that user, or access to the token to be used. For example, the token could be duplicated via Token Impersonation/Theft or created via Make and Impersonate Token before being used to create a process.
While this technique is distinct from Token Impersonation/Theft, the techniques can be used in conjunction where a token is duplicated and then used to create a new process.
The WhisperGate third stage can use the AdvancedRun.exe tool to execute commands in the context of the Windows TrustedInstaller group via
|Privileged Account Management
Limit permissions so that users and user groups cannot create tokens. This setting should be defined for the local system account only. GPO: Computer Configuration > [Policies] > Windows Settings > Security Settings > Local Policies > User Rights Assignment: Create a token object.  Also define who can create a process level token to only the local and network service through GPO: Computer Configuration > [Policies] > Windows Settings > Security Settings > Local Policies > User Rights Assignment: Replace a process level token.
Administrators should log in as a standard user but run their tools with administrator privileges using the built-in access token manipulation command
|User Account Management
An adversary must already have administrator level access on the local system to make full use of this technique; be sure to restrict users and accounts to the least privileges they require.
Monitor executed commands and arguments to detect token manipulation by auditing command-line activity. Specifically, analysts should look for use of the runas command or similar artifacts. Detailed command-line logging is not enabled by default in Windows.
|OS API Execution
Monitor for API calls associated with detecting token manipulation only through careful analysis of user activity, examination of running processes, and correlation with other endpoint and network behavior. Analysts can also monitor for use of Windows APIs such as