System Shutdown/Reboot

Adversaries may shutdown/reboot systems to interrupt access to, or aid in the destruction of, those systems. Operating systems may contain commands to initiate a shutdown/reboot of a machine or network device. In some cases, these commands may also be used to initiate a shutdown/reboot of a remote computer or network device via Network Device CLI (e.g. reload).[1][2] Shutting down or rebooting systems may disrupt access to computer resources for legitimate users.

Adversaries may attempt to shutdown/reboot a system after impacting it in other ways, such as Disk Structure Wipe or Inhibit System Recovery, to hasten the intended effects on system availability.[3][4]

ID: T1529
Sub-techniques:  No sub-techniques
Tactic: Impact
Platforms: Linux, Network, Windows, macOS
Impact Type: Availability
Contributors: Austin Clark, @c2defense
Version: 1.2
Created: 04 October 2019
Last Modified: 20 October 2022

Procedure Examples

ID Name Description
G0067 APT37

APT37 has used malware that will issue the command shutdown /r /t 1 to reboot a system after wiping its MBR.[5]

G0082 APT38

APT38 has used a custom MBR wiper named BOOTWRECK, which will initiate a system reboot after wiping the victim's MBR.[6]

S1033 DCSrv

DCSrv has a function to sleep for two hours before rebooting the system.[7]

S0697 HermeticWiper

HermeticWiper can initiate a system shutdown.[8][9]

S0607 KillDisk

KillDisk attempts to reboot the machine by terminating specific processes.[10]

G0032 Lazarus Group

Lazarus Group has rebooted systems after destroying files and wiping the MBR on infected systems.[11]

S0372 LockerGoga

LockerGoga has been observed shutting down infected systems.[12]

S0582 LookBack

LookBack can shutdown and reboot the victim machine.[13]

S0449 Maze

Maze has issued a shutdown command on a victim machine that, upon reboot, will run the ransomware within a VM.[14]

S0368 NotPetya

NotPetya will reboot the system one hour after infection.[3][15]

S0365 Olympic Destroyer

Olympic Destroyer will shut down the compromised system after it is done modifying system configuration settings.[4][15]

S0140 Shamoon

Shamoon will reboot the infected system once the wiping functionality has been completed.[16][17]

S0689 WhisperGate

WhisperGate can shutdown a compromised host through execution of ExitWindowsEx with the EXW_SHUTDOWN flag.[18]


This type of attack technique cannot be easily mitigated with preventive controls since it is based on the abuse of system features.


ID Data Source Data Component Detects
DS0017 Command Command Execution

Monitor executed commands and arguments of binaries involved in shutting down or rebooting systems. For network devices, monitor executed commands in AAA logs, especially those run by unexpected or unauthorized users.

DS0009 Process Process Creation

Monitor for newly executed processes of binaries involved in shutting down or rebooting systems.

DS0013 Sensor Health Host Status

Monitor for logging, messaging, and other artifacts highlighting the health of host sensors (ex: metrics, errors, and/or exceptions from logging applications) that may suggest the shutting down or rebooting of the system. Windows event logs may also designate activity associated with a shutdown/reboot, ex. Event ID 1074 and 6006.