Application Window Discovery
|Application Window Discovery|
|Data Sources||API monitoring, Process command-line parameters, Process monitoring|
Adversaries may attempt to get a listing of open application windows. Window listings could convey information about how the system is used or give context to information collected by a keylogger.
In Mac, this can be done natively with a small AppleScript script.
- Lazarus Group malware IndiaIndia obtains and sends to its C2 server the title of the window for each running process.1 The KilaAlfa keylogger also reports the title of the window in the foreground.2
- The discovery modules used with Duqu can collect information on open windows.3
- NetTraveler reports window names along with keylogger information to provide application context.4
- PowerDuke has a command to get text of the current foreground window.5
- SOUNDBITE is capable of enumerating application windows.6
Identify unnecessary system utilities or potentially malicious software that may be used to acquire information, and audit and/or block them by using whitelisting7 tools, like AppLocker,89 or Software Restriction Policies10 where appropriate.11
System and network discovery techniques normally occur throughout an operation as an adversary learns the environment. Data and events should not be viewed in isolation, but as part of a chain of behavior that could lead to other activities based on the information obtained.
Monitor processes and command-line arguments for actions that could be taken to gather system and network information. Remote access tools with built-in features may interact directly with the Windows API to gather information. Information may also be acquired through Windows system management tools such as Windows Management Instrumentation and PowerShell.
- Novetta Threat Research Group. (2016, February 24). Operation Blockbuster: Loaders, Installers and Uninstallers Report. Retrieved March 2, 2016.
- Novetta Threat Research Group. (2016, February 24). Operation Blockbuster: Tools Report. Retrieved March 10, 2016.
- Symantec Security Response. (2011, November). W32.Duqu: The precursor to the next Stuxnet. Retrieved September 17, 2015.
- Kaspersky Lab's Global Research and Analysis Team. (n.d.). The NetTraveler (aka ‘Travnet’). Retrieved November 12, 2014.
- Adair, S.. (2016, November 9). PowerDuke: Widespread Post-Election Spear Phishing Campaigns Targeting Think Tanks and NGOs. Retrieved January 11, 2017.
- Carr, N.. (2017, May 14). Cyber Espionage is Alive and Well: APT32 and the Threat to Global Corporations. Retrieved June 18, 2017.
- Beechey, J. (2010, December). Application Whitelisting: Panacea or Propaganda?. Retrieved November 18, 2014.
- Tomonaga, S. (2016, January 26). Windows Commands Abused by Attackers. Retrieved February 2, 2016.
- NSA Information Assurance Directorate. (2014, August). Application Whitelisting Using Microsoft AppLocker. Retrieved March 31, 2016.
- Corio, C., & Sayana, D. P. (2008, June). Application Lockdown with Software Restriction Policies. Retrieved November 18, 2014.
- Microsoft. (2012, June 27). Using Software Restriction Policies and AppLocker Policies. Retrieved April 7, 2016.