Services Escalate Exe

Services Escalate Exe


The following analytic identifies the use of svc-exe with Cobalt Strike. The behavior typically follows after an adversary has already gained initial access and is escalating privileges. Using svc-exe, a randomly named binary will be downloaded from the remote Teamserver and placed on disk within C:\Windows\400619a.exe. Following, the binary will be added to the registry under key HKLM\System\CurrentControlSet\Services\400619a\ with multiple keys and values added to look like a legitimate service. Upon loading, services.exe will spawn the randomly named binary from \\\ADMIN$\400619a.exe. The process lineage is completed with 400619a.exe spawning rundll32.exe, which is the default spawnto_ value for Cobalt Strike. The spawnto_ value is arbitrary and may be any process on disk (typically system32/syswow64 binary). The spawnto_ process will also contain a network connection. During triage, review parallel procesess and identify any additional file modifications.


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To successfully implement this search, you will need to ensure that DNS data is populating the Network_Resolution data model.


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