Gather Victim Identity Information: Employee Names
Before compromising a victim, adversaries may gather employee names that can be used during targeting. Employee names be used to derive email addresses as well as to help guide other reconnaissance efforts and/or craft more-believable lures.
Adversaries may easily gather employee names, since they may be readily available and exposed via online or other accessible data sets (ex: Social Media or Search Victim-Owned Websites). Gathering this information may reveal opportunities for other forms of reconnaissance (ex: Search Open Websites/Domains or Phishing for Information), establishing operational resources (ex: Compromise Accounts), and/or initial access (ex: Phishing or Valid Accounts).
This technique cannot be easily mitigated with preventive controls since it is based on behaviors performed outside of the scope of enterprise defenses and controls. Efforts should focus on minimizing the amount and sensitivity of data available to external parties.
Much of this activity may have a very high occurrence and associated false positive rate, as well as potentially taking place outside the visibility of the target organization, making detection difficult for defenders.
Detection efforts may be focused on related stages of the adversary lifecycle, such as during Initial Access.