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Amadey Info-Stealer: Exploiting N-Day Vulnerabilities to Launch Information Stealing Malware

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22
Mar 2023
22
Mar 2023
Amadey Info-stealer malware was detected across over 30 customers between August and December 2022, spanning various regions and industry verticals. This blog highlights the resurgence of Malware as a Service (MaaS) and the leveraging of existing N-Day vulnerabilities in SmokeLoader campaigns to launch Amadey on customers’ networks. This investigation was part of Darktrace’s continuous Threat Research work in efforts to identify and contextualize threats across the Darktrace fleet, building off of AI insights through collaborative human analysis.

The continued prevalence of Malware as a Service (MaaS) across the cyber threat landscape means that even the most inexperienced of would-be malicious actors are able to carry out damaging and wide-spread cyber-attacks with relative ease. Among these commonly employed MaaS are information stealers, or info-stealers, a type of malware that infects a device and attempts to gather sensitive information before exfiltrating it to the attacker. Info-stealers typically target confidential information, such as login credentials and bank details, and attempt to lie low on a compromised device, allowing access to sensitive data for longer periods of time. 

It is essential for organizations to have efficient security measures in place to defend their networks from attackers in an increasing versatile and accessible threat landscape, however incident response alone is not enough. Having an autonomous decision maker able to not only detect suspicious activity, but also take action against it in real time, is of the upmost importance to defend against significant network compromise. 

Between August and December 2022, Darktrace detected the Amadey info-stealer on more than 30 customer environments, spanning various regions and industry verticals across the customer base. This shows a continual presence and overlap of info-stealer indicators of compromise (IOCs) across the cyber threat landscape, such as RacoonStealer, which we discussed last November (Part 1 and Part 2).

Background on Amadey

Amadey Bot, a malware that was first discovered in 2018, is capable of stealing sensitive information and installing additional malware by receiving commands from the attacker. Like other malware strains, it is being sold in illegal forums as MaaS starting from $500 USD [1]. 

Researchers at AhnLab found that Amadey is typically distributed via existing SmokeLoader loader malware campaigns. Downloading cracked versions of legitimate software causes SmokeLoader to inject malicious payload into Windows Explorer processes and proceeds to download Amadey.  

The botnet has also been used for distributed denial of service (DDoS) attacks, and as a vector to install malware spam campaigns, such as LockBit 3.0 [2]. Regardless of the delivery techniques, similar patterns of activity were observed across multiple customer environments. 

Amadey’s primary function is to steal information and further distribute malware. It aims to extract a variety of information from infected devices and attempts to evade the detection of security measures by reducing the volume of data exfiltration compared to that seen in other malicious instances.

Darktrace DETECT/Network™ and its built-in features, such as Wireshark Packet Captures (PCAP), identified Amadey activity on customer networks, whilst Darktrace RESPOND/Network™ autonomously intervened to halt its progress.

Attack Details

Figure 1: Timeline of Amadey info-stealer kill chain.

Acceso inicial  

User engagement with malicious email attachments or cracked software results in direct execution of the SmokeLoader loader malware on a device. Once the loader has executed its payload, it is then able to download additional malware, including the Amadey info-stealer.

Unusual Outbound Connections 

After initial access by the loader and download of additional malware, the Amadey info-stealer captures screenshots of network information and sends them to Amadey command and control (C2) servers via HTTP POST requests with no GET to a .php URI. An example of this can be seen in Figure 2.  

Figure 2: PCAP from an affected customer showing screenshots being sent out to the Amadey C2 server via a .jpg file. 

C2 Communications  

The infected device continues to make repeated connections out to this Amadey endpoint. Amadey's C2 server will respond with instructions to download additional plugins in the form of dynamic-link libraries (DLLs), such as "/Mb1sDv3/Plugins/cred64.dll", or attempt to download secondary info-stealers such as RedLine or RaccoonStealer. 

Internal Reconnaissance 

The device downloads executable and DLL files, or stealer configuration files to steal additional network information from software including RealVNC and Outlook. Most compromised accounts were observed downloading additional malware following commands received from the attacker.

Exfiltración de datos 

The stolen information is then sent out via high volumes of HTTP connection. It makes HTTP POSTs to malicious .php URIs again, this time exfiltrating more data such as the Amadey version, device names, and any anti-malware software installed on the system.

How did the attackers bypass the rest of the security stack?

Existing N-Day vulnerabilities are leveraged to launch new attacks on customer networks and potentially bypass other tools in the security stack. Additionally, exfiltrating data via low and slow HTTP connections, rather than large file transfers to cloud storage platforms, is an effective means of evading the detection of traditional security tools which often look for large data transfers, sometimes to a specific list of identified “bad” endpoints.

Darktrace Coverage 

Amadey activity was autonomously identified by DETECT and the Cyber AI Analyst. A list of DETECT models that were triggered on deployments during this kill chain can be found in the Appendices. 

Various Amadey activities were detected and highlighted in DETECT model breaches and their model breach event logs. Figure 3 shows a compromised device making suspicious HTTP POST requests, causing the ‘Anomalous Connection / Posting HTTP to IP Without Hostname’ model to breach. It also downloaded an executable file (.exe) from the same IP.

Figure 3: Amadey activity on a customer deployment captured by model breaches and event logs. 

DETECT’s built-in features also assisted with detecting the data exfiltration. Using the PCAP integration, the exfiltrated data was captured for analysis. Figure 4 shows a connection made to the Amadey endpoint, in which information about the infected device, such as system ID and computer name, were sent. 

Figure 4: PCAP downloaded from Darktrace event logs highlighting data egress to the Amadey endpoint. 

Further information about the infected system can be seen in the above PCAP. As outlined by researchers at Ahnlab and shown in Figure 5, additional system information sent includes the Amadey version (vs=), the device’s admin privilege status (ar=), and any installed anti-malware or anti-virus software installed on the infected environment (av=) [3]. 

Figure 5: AhnLab’s glossary table explaining the information sent to the Amadey C2 server. 

Darktrace’s AI Analyst was also able to connect commonalities between model breaches on a device and present them as a connected incident made up of separate events. Figure 6 shows the AI Analyst incident log for a device having breached multiple models indicative of the Amadey kill chain. It displays the timeline of these events, the specific IOCs, and the associated attack tactic, in this case ‘Command and Control’. 

Figure 6: A screenshot of multiple IOCs and activity correlated together by AI Analyst. 

When enabled on customer’s deployments, RESPOND was able to take immediate action against Amadey to mitigate its impact on customer networks. RESPOND models that breached include: 

  • Antigena / Network / Significant Anomaly / Antigena Significant Anomaly from Client Block
  • Antigena / Network / External Threat / Antigena Suspicious File Block 
  • Antigena / Network / Significant Anomaly / Antigena Controlled and Model Breach

On one customer’s environment, a device made a POST request with no GET to URI ‘/p84Nls2/index.php’ and unepeureyore[.]xyz. RESPOND autonomously enforced a previously established pattern of life on the device twice for 30 minutes each and blocked all outgoing traffic from the device for 10 minutes. Enforcing a device’s pattern of life restricts it to conduct activity within the device and/or user’s expected pattern of behavior and blocks anything anomalous or unexpected, enabling normal business operations to continue. This response is intended to reduce the potential scale of attacks by disrupting the kill chain, whilst ensuring business disruption is kept to a minimum. 

Figure 7: RESPOND actions taken on a customer deployment to disrupt the Amadey kill chain. 

The Darktrace Threat Research team conducted thorough investigations into Amadey activity observed across the customer base. They were able to identify and contextualize this threat across the fleet, enriching AI insights with collaborative human analysis. Pivoting from AI insights as their primary source of information, the Threat Research team were able to provide layered analysis to confirm this campaign-like activity and assess the threat across multiple unique environments, providing a holistic assessment to customers with contextualized insights.

Conclusion

The presence of the Amadey info-stealer in multiple customer environments highlights the continuing prevalence of MaaS and info-stealers across the threat landscape. The Amadey info-stealer in particular demonstrates that by evading N-day vulnerability patches, threat actors routinely launch new attacks. These malicious actors are then able to evade detection by traditional security tools by employing low and slow data exfiltration techniques, as opposed to large file transfers.

Crucially, Darktrace’s AI insights were coupled with expert human analysis to detect, respond, and provide contextualized insights to notify customers of Amadey activity effectively. DETECT captured Amadey activity taking place on customer deployments, and where enabled, RESPOND’s autonomous technology was able to take immediate action to reduce the scale of such attacks. Finally, the Threat Research team were in place to provide enhanced analysis for affected customers to help security teams future-proof against similar attacks.

Appendices

Darktrace Model Detections 

Anomalous File / EXE from Rare External Location

Device / Initial Breach Chain Compromise

Anomalous Connection / Posting HTTP to IP Without Hostname 

Anomalous Connection / POST to PHP on New External Host

Anomalous Connection / Multiple HTTP POSTs to Rare Hostname 

Compromise / Beaconing Activity To External Rare

Compromise / Slow Beaconing Activity To External Rare

Anomalous Connection / Multiple Failed Connections to Rare Endpoint

List of IOCs

f0ce8614cc2c3ae1fcba93bc4a8b82196e7139f7 - SHA1 - Amadey DLL File Hash

e487edceeef3a41e2a8eea1e684bcbc3b39adb97 - SHA1 - Amadey DLL File Hash

0f9006d8f09e91bbd459b8254dd945e4fbae25d9 - SHA1 - Amadey DLL File Hash

4069fdad04f5e41b36945cc871eb87a309fd3442 - SHA1 - Amadey DLL File Hash

193.106.191[.]201 - IP - Amadey C2 Endpoint

77.73.134[.]66 - IP - Amadey C2 Endpoint

78.153.144[.]60 - IP - Amadey C2 Endpoint

62.204.41[.]252 - IP - Amadey C2 Endpoint

45.153.240[.]94 - IP - Amadey C2 Endpoint

185.215.113[.]204 - IP - Amadey C2 Endpoint

85.209.135[.]11 - IP - Amadey C2 Endpoint

185.215.113[.]205 - IP - Amadey C2 Endpoint

31.41.244[.]146 - IP - Amadey C2 Endpoint

5.154.181[.]119 - IP - Amadey C2 Endpoint

45.130.151[.]191 - IP - Amadey C2 Endpoint

193.106.191[.]184 - IP - Amadey C2 Endpoint

31.41.244[.]15 - IP - Amadey C2 Endpoint

77.73.133[.]72 - IP - Amadey C2 Endpoint

89.163.249[.]231 - IP - Amadey C2 Endpoint

193.56.146[.]243 - IP - Amadey C2 Endpoint

31.41.244[.]158 - IP - Amadey C2 Endpoint

85.209.135[.]109 - IP - Amadey C2 Endpoint

77.73.134[.]45 - IP - Amadey C2 Endpoint

moscow12[.]at - Hostname - Amadey C2 Endpoint

moscow13[.]at - Hostname - Amadey C2 Endpoint

unepeureyore[.]xyz - Hostname - Amadey C2 Endpoint

/fb73jc3/index.php - URI - Amadey C2 Endpoint

/panelis/index.php - URI - Amadey C2 Endpoint

/panelis/index.php?scr=1 - URI - Amadey C2 Endpoint

/panel/index.php - URI - Amadey C2 Endpoint

/panel/index.php?scr=1 - URI - Amadey C2 Endpoint

/panel/Plugins/cred.dll - URI - Amadey C2 Endpoint

/jg94cVd30f/index.php - URI - Amadey C2 Endpoint

/jg94cVd30f/index.php?scr=1 - URI - Amadey C2 Endpoint

/o7Vsjd3a2f/index.php - URI - Amadey C2 Endpoint

/o7Vsjd3a2f/index.php?scr=1 - URI - Amadey C2 Endpoint

/o7Vsjd3a2f/Plugins/cred64.dll - URI - Amadey C2 Endpoint

/gjend7w/index.php - URI - Amadey C2 Endpoint

/hfk3vK9/index.php - URI - Amadey C2 Endpoint

/v3S1dl2/index.php - URI - Amadey C2 Endpoint

/f9v33dkSXm/index.php - URI - Amadey C2 Endpoint

/p84Nls2/index.php - URI - Amadey C2 Endpoint

/p84Nls2/Plugins/cred.dll - URI - Amadey C2 Endpoint

/nB8cWack3/index.php - URI - Amadey C2 Endpoint

/rest/index.php - URI - Amadey C2 Endpoint

/Mb1sDv3/index.php - URI - Amadey C2 Endpoint

/Mb1sDv3/index.php?scr=1 - URI - Amadey C2 Endpoint

/Mb1sDv3/Plugins/cred64.dll  - URI - Amadey C2 Endpoint

/h8V2cQlbd3/index.php - URI - Amadey C2 Endpoint

/f5OknW/index.php - URI - Amadey C2 Endpoint

/rSbFldr23/index.php - URI - Amadey C2 Endpoint

/rSbFldr23/index.php?scr=1 - URI - Amadey C2 Endpoint

/jg94cVd30f/Plugins/cred64.dll - URI - Amadey C2 Endpoint

/mBsjv2swweP/Plugins/cred64.dll - URI - Amadey C2 Endpoint

/rSbFldr23/Plugins/cred64.dll - URI - Amadey C2 Endpoint

/Plugins/cred64.dll - URI - Amadey C2 Endpoint

Mitre Attack and Mapping 

Collection:

T1185 - Man the Browser

Initial Access and Resource Development:

T1189 - Drive-by Compromise

T1588.001 - Malware

Persistence:

T1176 - Browser Extensions

Command and Control:

T1071 - Application Layer Protocol

T1071.001 - Web Protocols

T1090.002 - External Proxy

T1095 - Non-Application Layer Protocol

T1571 - Non-Standard Port

T1105 - Ingress Tool Transfer

References 

[1] https://malpedia.caad.fkie.fraunhofer.de/details/win.amadey

[2] https://asec.ahnlab.com/en/41450/

[3] https://asec.ahnlab.com/en/36634/

DENTRO DEL SOC
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SOBRE EL AUTOR
Zoe Tilsiter
Cyber Analyst
The Darktrace Threat Research Team
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Email

Looking Beyond Secure Email Gateways with the Latest Innovations to Darktrace/Email

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09
Apr 2024

Organizations Should Demand More from their Email Security

In response to a more intricate threat landscape, organizations should view email security as a critical component of their defense-in-depth strategy, rather than defending the inbox alone with a traditional Secure Email Gateway (SEG). Organizations need more than a traditional gateway – that doubles, instead of replaces, the capabilities provided by native security vendor – and require an equally granular degree of analysis across all messaging, including inbound, outbound, and lateral mail, plus Teams messages.  

Darktrace/Email is the industry’s most advanced cloud email security, powered by Self-Learning AI. It combines AI techniques to exceed the accuracy and efficiency of leading security solutions, and is the only security built to elevate, not duplicate, native email security.  

With its largest update ever, Darktrace/Email introduces the following innovations, finally allowing security teams to look beyond secure email gateways with autonomous AI:

  • AI-augmented data loss prevention to stop the entire spectrum of outbound mail threats
  • an easy way to deploy DMARC quickly with AI
  • major enhancements to streamline SOC workflows and increase the detection of sophisticated phishing links
  • expansion of Darktrace’s leading AI prevention to lateral mail, account compromise and Microsoft Teams

What’s New with Darktrace/Email  

Data Loss Prevention  

Block the entire spectrum of outbound mail threats with advanced data loss prevention that builds on tags in native email to stop unknown, accidental, and malicious data loss

Darktrace understands normal at individual user, group and organization level with a proven AI that detects abnormal user behavior and dynamic content changes. Using this understanding, Darktrace/Email actions outbound emails to stop unknown, accidental and malicious data loss.  

Traditional DLP solutions only take into account classified data, which relies on the manual input of labelling each data piece, or creating rules to catch pattern matches that try to stop data of certain types leaving the organization. But in today’s world of constantly changing data, regular expression and fingerprinting detection are no longer enough.

  • Human error – Because it understands normal for every user, Darktrace/Email can recognize cases of misdirected emails. Even if the data is correctly labelled or insensitive, Darktrace recognizes when the context in which it is being sent could be a case of data loss and warns the user.  
  • Unclassified data – Whereas traditional DLP solutions can only take action on classified data, Darktrace analyzes the range of data that is either pending labels or can’t be labeled with typical capabilities due to its understanding of the content and context of every email.  
  • Insider threat – If a malicious actor has compromised an account, data exfiltration may still be attempted on encrypted, intellectual property, or other forms of unlabelled data to avoid detection. Darktrace analyses user behaviour to catch cases of unusual data exfiltration from individual accounts.

And classification efforts already in place aren’t wasted – Darktrace/Email extends Microsoft Purview policies and sensitivity labels to avoid duplicate workflows for the security team, combining the best of both approaches to ensure organizations maintain control and visibility over their data.

End User and Security Workflows

Achieve more than 60% improvement in the quality of end-user phishing reports and detection of sophisticated malicious weblinks1

Darktrace/Email improves end-user reporting from the ground up to save security team resource. Employees will always be on the front line of email security – while other solutions assume that end-user reporting is automatically of poor quality, Darktrace prioritizes improving users’ security awareness to increase the quality of end-user reporting from day one.  

Users are empowered to assess and report suspicious activity with contextual banners and Cyber AI Analyst generated narratives for potentially suspicious emails, resulting in 60% fewer benign emails reported.  

Out of the higher-quality emails that end up being reported, the next step is to reduce the amount of emails that reach the SOC. Darktrace/Email’s Mailbox Security Assistant automates their triage with secondary analysis combining additional behavioral signals – using x20 more metrics than previously – with advanced link analysis to detect 70% more sophisticated malicious phishing links.2 This directly alleviates the burden of manual triage for security analysts.

For the emails that are received by the SOC, Darktrace/Email uses automation to reduce time spent investigating per incident. With live inbox view, security teams gain access to a centralized platform that combines intuitive search capabilities, Cyber AI Analyst reports, and mobile application access. Analysts can take remediation actions from within Darktrace/Email, eliminating console hopping and accelerating incident response.

Darktrace takes a user-focused and business-centric approach to email security, in contrast to the attack-centric rules and signatures approach of secure email gateways

Microsoft Teams

Detect threats within your Teams environment such as account compromise, phishing, malware and data loss

Around 83% of Fortune 500 companies rely on Microsoft Office products and services, particularly Teams and SharePoint.3

Darktrace now leverages the same behavioral AI techniques for Microsoft customers across 365 and Teams, allowing organizations to detect threats and signals of account compromise within their Teams environment including social engineering, malware and data loss.  

The primary use case for Microsoft Teams protection is as a potential entry vector. While messaging has traditionally been internal only, as organizations open up it is becoming an entry vector which needs to be treated with the same level of caution as email. That’s why we’re bringing our proven AI approach to Microsoft Teams, that understands the user behind the message.  

Anomalous messaging behavior is also a highly relevant indicator of whether a user has been compromised. Unlike other solutions that analyze Microsoft Teams content which focus on payloads, Darktrace goes beyond basic link and sandbox analysis and looks at actual user behavior from both a content and context perspective. This linguistic understanding isn’t bound by the requirement to match a signature to a malicious payload, rather it looks at the context in which the message has been delivered. From this analysis, Darktrace can spot the early symptoms of account compromise such as early-stage social engineering before a payload is delivered.

Lateral Mail Analysis

Detect and respond to internal mailflow with multi-layered AI to prevent account takeover, lateral phishing and data leaks

The industry’s most robust account takeover protection now prevents lateral mail account compromise. Darktrace has always looked at internal mail to inform inbound and outbound decisions, but will now elevate suspicious lateral mail behaviour using the same AI techniques for inbound, outbound and Teams analysis.

Darktrace integrates signals from across the entire mailflow and communication patterns to determine symptoms of account compromise, now including lateral mailflow

Unlike other solutions which only analyze payloads, Darktrace analyzes a whole range of signals to catch lateral movement before a payload is delivered. Contributing yet another layer to the AI behavioral profile for each user, security teams can now use signals from lateral mail to spot the early symptoms of account takeover and take autonomous actions to prevent further compromise.

DMARC

Gain in-depth visibility and control of 3rd parties using your domain with an industry-first AI-assisted DMARC

Darktrace has created the easiest path to brand protection and compliance with the new Darktrace/DMARC. This new capability continuously stops spoofing and phishing from the enterprise domain, while automatically enhancing email security and reducing the attack surface.

Darktrace/DMARC helps to upskill businesses by providing step by step guidance and automated record suggestions provide a clear, efficient road to enforcement. It allows organizations to quickly achieve compliance with requirements from Google, Yahoo, and others, to ensure that their emails are reaching mailboxes.  

Meanwhile, Darktrace/DMARC helps to reduce the overall attack surface by providing visibility over shadow-IT and third-party vendors sending on behalf of an organization’s brand, while informing recipients when emails from their domains are sent from un-authenticated DMARC source.

Darktrace/DMARC integrates with the wider Darktrace product platform, sharing insights to help further secure your business across Email Attack Path and Attack Surface management.

Conclusion

To learn more about the new innovations to Darktrace/Email download the solution brief here.

All of the new updates to Darktrace/Email sit within the new Darktrace ActiveAI Security Platform, creating a feedback loop between email security and the rest of the digital estate for better protection. Click to read more about the Darktrace ActiveAI Security Platform or to hear about the latest innovations to Darktrace/OT, the most comprehensive prevention, detection, and response solution purpose built for critical infrastructures.  

Learn about the intersection of cyber and AI by downloading the State of AI Cyber Security 2024 report to discover global findings that may surprise you, insights from security leaders, and recommendations for addressing today’s top challenges that you may face, too.

References

[1] Internal Darktrace Research

[2] Internal Darktrace Research

[3] Essential Microsoft Office Statistics in 2024

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Carlos Gray
Product Manager

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Managing Risk Beyond CVE Scores With the Latest Innovations to Darktrace/OT

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09
Apr 2024

Identifying Cyber Risk in Industrial Organizations

Compromised OT devices in ICS and SCADA environments pose significant physical risks, even endangering lives. However, identifying CVEs in the multitude of complex OT devices is labor-intensive and time-consuming, draining valuable resources.

Even after identifying a vulnerability, implementing a patch presents its own challenges limited maintenance windows and the need for uninterrupted operations strain IT and OT teams often leading organizations to prioritize availability over security leading vulnerabilities remaining unresolved for over 5 years on average. (1)

Darktrace’s New Innovation

Darktrace is an industry leader in cybersecurity with 10+ years of experience securing OT environments where we take a fundamentally different approach using Self-Learning AI to enhance threat detection and response.

Continuing to combat the expanding threat landscape, Darktrace is excited to announce new capabilities that enable a contextualized and proactive approach to managing cyber risk at industrial organizations.

Today we launch an innovation to our OT Cybersecurity solution, Darktrace/OT, that will add a layer of proactivity, enabling a comprehensive approach to risk management. This industry leading innovation for Darktrace/OT moves beyond CVE scores to redefine vulnerability management for critical infrastructure, tackling the full breadth of risks not limited by traditional controls.  

Darktrace/OT is the only OT security solution with comprehensive Risk Management which includes:

  • Contextualized risk analysis unique to your organization
  • The most realistic evaluation and prioritization of OT risk
  • Effectively mitigate risk across your OT infrastructure, with and without patching.
  • The only OT security solution that evaluates your defenses against Advanced Persistent Threat (APT) Groups.

The most comprehensive prevention, detection, and response solution purpose built for Critical Infrastructures

Darktrace’s Self-Learning AI technology is a cutting-edge innovation that implements real time prevention, detection, response, and recovery for operational technologies and enables a fundamental shift from the traditional approach to cyber defense by learning a ‘pattern of life’ for every network, device, and user.  

Rather than relying on knowledge of past attacks, AI technology learns what is ‘normal’ for its environment, discovering previously unknown threats by detecting subtle shifts in behavior. Through identifying these unexpected anomalies, security teams can investigate novel attacks, discover blind spots, have live time visibility across all their physical and digital assets, and reduce time to detect, respond to, and triage security events.  

  • Achieve greater visibility of OT and IT devices across all levels of the Purdue Model.
  • The industry's only OT security to scale threat detection and response, with a 92% time saving from triage to recovery.  
  • The only OT focused security solution to provide bespoke Risk Management.

To learn more about how Darktrace/OT approaches unique use cases for industrial organizations visit the Darktrace/OT Webpage or join us LIVE at a city near you.

Read more below to discover how new innovations to Darktrace/OT are bringing a new, contextualized approach to Risk Management for Industrial organizations.

For more information on the entire Darktrace/OT Solution read our solution brief here.

Darktrace/OT and New Risk Management

Risk Identification

Leveraging the visibility of Darktrace/OT which identifies individual systems throughout the Purdue Model and the relationship between them, Darktrace/OT identifies high-risk CVEs and presents potential attack routes that go beyond techniques requiring a known exploit, such as misuse of legitimate services. Each attack path will have a mathematical evaluation of difficulty and impact from initial access to the high value objectives.  

Together this gives comprehensive coverage over your real and potential risks from both an attacker and known vulnerability perspectives. OT attack paths as seen here even leverage insights between the industrial and corporate communications to reveal ways threat actors may take advantage of IT-OT convergence. This revelation of imperceptible risks fills gaps in traditional risk analysis like remote access and insider threats.

Figure 1: Darktrace/OT visualizing the most critical attack paths at an organization
Figure 1: Darktrace/OT visualizing the most critical attack paths at an organization
Figure 2: A specific Attack Path identified by Darktrace/OT

Risk Prioritization

Darktrace/OT prioritizes remediations and mitigations based on difficulty and damage to your unique organization, using the established Attack Paths.

We ascertain the priorities that apply to your organization beyond pure theoretical damage answering questions like:

  • How difficult is a particular vulnerability to exploit considering the steps an attacker would require to reach it?
  • And, how significant would the impact be if it was exploited within this particular network?

This expanded approach to risk prioritization has a much more comprehensive evaluation of your organization's unique risk than has ever been possible before. Traditional approaches of ranking only known vulnerabilities with isolated scores using CVSS and exploitability metrics, often leaves gaps in IT-OT risks and is blind to legitimate service exploitation.

Figure 3: Darktrace/OT leverages its contextual understand of the organization’s network to prioritize remediation that will have the positive impact on the risk score

Darktrace provides mitigation strategies associated with each identified risk and the relevant impact it has on your overall risk posture, across all MITRE ATT&CK techniques.

What sets Darktrace apart is our ability to contextualize these mitigations within the broader business. When patching vulnerabilities directly isn’t possible, Darktrace identifies alternative actions that harden attack paths leading to critical assets. Hardening the surrounding attack path increases the difficulty and therefore reduces the likelihood and impact of a breach.

That means unpatched vulnerabilities and vulnerable devices aren’t left unprotected. This also has an added bonus, those hardening techniques work for all devices in that network segment, so apply one change, secure many.

Figure 4: Darktrace prioritizes mitigation reducing accessibility of vulnerability and the overall risk score when patches aren’t available

Communicate Board Level Risk with APT Threat Mapping

Darktrace/OT bridges theory and practice as the only security solution that maps MITRE techniques, frequently used by APT Groups, onto AI-assessed critical Attack Paths. This unique solution provides unparalleled insights including sector and location intelligence, possible operating platforms, common techniques, exploited CVEs, and the number of potential devices affected in your environment, supporting holistic risk assessment and proactive defense measures.

Ultimately, this becomes a power dashboard to communicate board level risk, using both metric based evidence and industry standard threat mapping.

Conclusion

Darktrace/OT is part of the Darktrace ActiveAI Security Platform a native, holistic, AI-driven platform built on over ten years of AI research. It helps security teams shift to more a productive mode, finding the known and the unknown attacks and transforming the SOC with the various Darktrace products to drive efficiency gains. It does this across the whole incident lifecycle to lower risk, reduce time spent on active incidents, and drive return on investment.

Discover more about Darktrace's ever-strengthening platform with the upcoming changes coming to our Darktrace/Email product and other launch day blogs.

Join Darktrace LIVE half-day event to understand the reality versus the hype surrounding AI and how to achieve cyber resilience.

Learn about the intersection of cyber and AI by downloading the State of AI Cyber Security 2024 report to discover global findings that may surprise you, insights from security leaders, and recommendations for addressing today’s top challenges that you may face, too.  

References

1. https://research-information.bris.ac.uk/ws/portalfiles/portal/313646831/Catch_Me_if_You_Can.pdf

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Mitchell Bezzina
VP, Product and Solutions Marketing
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