Mapping To Inception

Inception is a cyber espionage group active since at least 2014. The group has targeted multiple industries and governmental entities primarily in Russia, but has also been active in the United States and throughout Europe, Asia, Africa, and the Middle East.


Disclaimer: We present this mapping to stimulate thinking about active defense options to combat this adversary, not to present all possibilities. We invite you to use this as a guide and add your own use cases for applying Shield techniques to counter each adversary action.

Note: All ATT&CK Group sub-technique mappings have been remapped to their parent technique and were derived from Group Technique mappings in ATT&CK v8.

Details
ATT&CK ID: G0100
Associated Groups:  Inception, Inception Framework, Cloud Atlas
Note:  This page uses Adversary Group data from MITRE ATT&CK.
ATT&CK Technique Opportunity Space AD Technique Use Case
T1005 - Data from Local System In an adversary engagement scenario, there is an opportunity to add legitimacy by ensuring the local system is with fully populated with content. DTE0030 - Pocket Litter A defender can stage a variety of pocket litter files to bolster the legitimacy of the local system.
T1005 - Data from Local System In an adversary engagement scenario, there is an opportunity provide content on a variety of topics to see what types of information seems to interest the adversary. DTE0030 - Pocket Litter A defender can stage a variety of pocket litter files in order to determine if an adversary is interested in specific file types, subjects, etc.
T1027 - Obfuscated Files or Information In an adversary engagement scenario, there is an opportunity to introduce decoy systems that can influence an adversary's behavior or allow you to observe how they perform a specific task. DTE0017 - Decoy System A defender could implement a decoy system to study how and when an adversary obfuscate files and hides information.
T1057 - Process Discovery There is an opportunity for the defender to observe the adversary and control what they can see, what effects they can have, and/or what data they can access. DTE0036 - Software Manipulation A defender can modify commands such that the true list of running processes is not revealed, hiding necessary active defense processes from the adversary.
T1057 - Process Discovery There is an opportunity to present decoy processes to an adversary to influence their behaviors, test their interest, or add legitimacy to a system or environment. DTE0016 - Decoy Process A defender can run decoy processes on a system to entice an adversary.
T1059 - Command and Scripting Interpreter There is an opportunity for the defender to observe the adversary and control what they can see, what effects they can have, and/or what data they can access. DTE0036 - Software Manipulation A defender can manipulate the output of system commands issued to alter information the adversary might use during their activity.
T1059 - Command and Scripting Interpreter There is an opportunity for the defender to observe the adversary and control what they can see, what effects they can have, and/or what data they can access. DTE0036 - Software Manipulation A defender can modify the functionality of commands used to delete files so that the files are copied to a safe location before they are deleted.
T1059 - Command and Scripting Interpreter There is an opportunity for the defender to observe the adversary and control what they can see, what effects they can have, and/or what data they can access. DTE0034 - System Activity Monitoring A defender can detect the presence of an adversary by monitoring for processes that are created by commands and/or scripts they execute on a system.
T1069 - Permission Groups Discovery In an adversary engagement operation, there is an opportunity to impact what an adversary sees when they execute commands on a system. DTE0036 - Software Manipulation A defender could manipulate a system's software to alter the results of an adversary enumerating permission group information.
T1071 - Application Layer Protocol There is an opportunity to monitor network traffic for different protocols, anomalous traffic patterns, transfer of data, etc. to determine the presence of an adversary. DTE0027 - Network Monitoring The defender can implement network monitoring for and alert on anomalous traffic patterns, large or unexpected data transfers, and other activity that may reveal the presence of an adversary.
T1082 - System Information Discovery There is an opportunity to feed content to an adversary to influence their behaviors, test their interest in specific topics, or add legitimacy to a system or environment. DTE0011 - Decoy Content A defender can use decoy content to give the false impression about the system when an adversary performs system information discovery.
T1083 - File and Directory Discovery There is an opportunity to feed content to an adversary to influence their behaviors, test their interest in specific topics, or add legitimacy to a system or environment. DTE0011 - Decoy Content A defender can utilize decoy files and directories to provide content that could be used by the adversary.
T1090 - Proxy There is an opportunity to block an adversary that is seeking to use a proxied connection. DTE0026 - Network Manipulation A defender could block traffic to known anonymity networks and C2 infrastructure through the use of network allow and block lists.
T1102 - Web Service There is an opportunity to detect the presence of an adversary by identifying and alerting on anomalous behaviors. DTE0007 - Behavioral Analytics A defender can detect the use of external web services for communication relay. By implementing behavior analytics anomalies in what domains a system is communicating with, how frequently, and at what times, a defender can potentially identify malicious traffic.
T1203 - Exploitation for Client Execution There is an opportunity to study the adversary and collect first-hand observations about them and their tools. DTE0017 - Decoy System A defender can use a decoy system to see if an adversary exploits vulnerable software in order to compromise the system.
T1203 - Exploitation for Client Execution There is an opportunity to discover who or what is being targeting by an adversary. DTE0004 - Application Diversity A defender can install one or more applications on a decoy system with a variety of patch levels to see how an adversary might exploit those applications.
T1204 - User Execution There is an opportunity to study the adversary and collect first-hand observations about them and their tools. DTE0018 - Detonate Malware A defender can execute adversary malware on a decoy system and examine its behaviors or potentially engage with the adversary to obtain further intelligence.
T1218 - Signed Binary Proxy Execution There is an opportunity to block an adversary's intended action and force them to reveal additional TTPs. DTE0036 - Software Manipulation A defender can monitor operating system functions calls to look for adversary use and/or abuse.
T1218 - Signed Binary Proxy Execution There is an opportunity to study the adversary and collect first-hand observations about them and their tools. DTE0018 - Detonate Malware A defender can detonate malicious code leveraging a signed binary on a decoy system or within a decoy network to see how it behaves or for adversary engagement purposes.
T1218 - Signed Binary Proxy Execution There is an opportunity to create a detection with a moderately high probability of success. DTE0003 - API Monitoring A defender can monitor and analyze operating system functions calls for detection and alerting.
T1221 - Template Injection There is an opportunity to study the adversary and collect first-hand observations about them and their tools. DTE0017 - Decoy System A defender can have decoy systems that are easy to gain access to and have Office installed. The decoy system can be monitored to see if an adversary attempts to inject anything malicious into Office templates.
T1518 - Software Discovery There is an opportunity to provide a variety of applications to an adversary to see what things an adversary prefers or to influence their operations. DTE0004 - Application Diversity A defender can install an array of various software packages on a system to make it look used and populated. This will give an adversary a collection of software to interact with and possibly expose additional techniques.
T1547 - Boot or Logon Autostart Execution There is an opportunity to use tools and controls to stop an adversary's activity. DTE0006 - Baseline A defender can store good copies of registry startup keys and restore them on a frequent basis. This can prevent an adversary from using them to launch malware on system startup.
T1555 - Credentials from Password Stores In order to prolong an adversary engagement operation or enable detections, there is an opportunity to introduce credentials to an adversary that you want them to collect and use. DTE0012 - Decoy Credentials A defender can plant decoy credentials across an array of locations to increase the chances of an adversary finding and using them.
T1566 - Phishing A phishing email can be detected and blocked from arriving at the intended recipient. DTE0019 - Email Manipulation A defender can intercept emails that are detected as suspicious or malicious by email detection tools and prevent deliver to the intended target.
T1566 - Phishing A phishing email can be detected and moved from the intended recipient to a decoy account for reading and execution. DTE0023 - Migrate Attack Vector A defender can move suspicious emails to a decoy system prior to opening and examining the email.
T1566 - Phishing Users trained and encouraged to report phishing can detect attacks that other defenses do not. DTE0035 - User Training A program to train and exercise the anti-phishing skills of users can create "Human Sensors" that help detect phishing attacks.
T1566 - Phishing There is an opportunity to discover who or what is being targeting by an adversary. DTE0015 - Decoy Persona A defender can seed information about the decoy persona's personal accounts on systems to see if the adversary collects and uses that information in future activity.
T1573 - Encrypted Channel There is an opportunity to reveal data that the adversary has tried to protect from defenders DTE0031 - Protocol Decoder Defenders can reverse engineer malware and develop protocol decoders that can decrypt and expose adversary communications