|Disable or Modify Tools
|Disable Windows Event Logging
|Impair Command History Logging
|Disable or Modify System Firewall
|Disable or Modify Cloud Firewall
|Disable or Modify Cloud Logs
|Safe Mode Boot
|Spoof Security Alerting
|Disable or Modify Linux Audit System
Adversaries may abuse Windows safe mode to disable endpoint defenses. Safe mode starts up the Windows operating system with a limited set of drivers and services. Third-party security software such as endpoint detection and response (EDR) tools may not start after booting Windows in safe mode. There are two versions of safe mode: Safe Mode and Safe Mode with Networking. It is possible to start additional services after a safe mode boot.
Adversaries may abuse safe mode to disable endpoint defenses that may not start with a limited boot. Hosts can be forced into safe mode after the next reboot via modifications to Boot Configuration Data (BCD) stores, which are files that manage boot application settings.
Adversaries may also add their malicious applications to the list of minimal services that start in safe mode by modifying relevant Registry values (i.e. Modify Registry). Malicious Component Object Model (COM) objects may also be registered and loaded in safe mode.
|Privileged Account Management
Restrict administrator accounts to as few individuals as possible, following least privilege principles, that may be abused to remotely boot a machine in safe mode.
Ensure that endpoint defenses run in safe mode.
Monitor newly executed processes that may abuse Windows safe mode to disable endpoint defenses.
|Windows Registry Key Creation
Monitor Registry creation for services that may start on safe mode. For example, a program can be forced to start on safe mode boot by adding a
|Windows Registry Key Modification
Monitor modifications to Registry data associated with enabling safe mode. For example, a service can be forced to start on safe mode boot by adding a