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Unique Executables and New Commands Report

by Josef Weiss
April 7, 2016

The Unique Executables and New Commands report presents information on unique processes and new commands that have been detected in the environment. The ability to detect unique processes across hosts is very useful for identifying any new changes, as well as executables created by malicious software.

Many types of malicious software create executables with random file names, being able to alert on these alerts is key in maintaining a secure environment. As new patches are deployed in the environment, the first computer to run the patch will trigger an event alert. The ability to identify these events can be an additional form of software assurance ensuring that each of your systems is running the appropriate software.

Hosts typically generate thousands of process logs per day. Auditing each log entry can be administratively impossible. Tenable LCE leverages Unix and Windows clients to collect application execution logs. When monitored by the LCE, every program running on every laptop, desktop, and server is logged and gathered for automated analysis and anomaly detection. These events are normalized and forwarded to SecurityCenter. This data is of great use for alerting on behavior indicative of malicious software.

This report utilizes filters for unique executables and new commands based on normalized events from the LCE. The normalized events identified in this report are generated using TASL (Tenable Application Scripting Language). The TASL identifies unique executable events generated when a command or program is observed being used for the first time. The report is comprised of sections for Windows and Linux/Unix that presents data from the event. The LCE new command event is generated when a command or program is observed being used for the first time on a single host. The new command event, by default, reports on all hosts regardless of platform.

The report and its elements are available in the SecurityCenter Feed, a comprehensive collection of dashboards, reports, Assurance Report Cards, and assets. The report can be easily located in the SecurityCenter Feed under the category Monitoring.

The dashboard requirements are:

  • SecurityCenter 4.8.2
  • LCE 4.6.1

SecurityCenter Continuous View (CV) provides continuous network monitoring, vulnerability identification, risk reduction, and compliance monitoring. SecurityCenter CV is continuously updated with information about advanced threats, zero-day vulnerabilities, and new types of regulatory compliance configuration audits. SecurityCenter CV allows for the most comprehensive and integrated view of network health.

The dashboard contains the following components:

  • Executive Summary - For each command received by the LCE, the LCE keeps a global list of all commands that have ever been seen on any host. When a new command that has not been seen before occurs, an event is generated for Windows or Unix systems based on the system type. This chapter trends the unique Windows and Unix executables, as well as the new commands that have been detected over the last seven days.
  • Unique Executables - When a new command that has not been seen before occurs, an event is generated for Windows or Unix systems based on the system type. This chapter includes elements displaying the Class C networks and hosts, with counts, for those networks where new commands have been detected. Also presented is a host event table displaying the commands executed.
  • New Command - When a new command is run, this alert is generated. This chapter includes elements displaying the Class C networks and hosts, with counts, for those networks where new commands have been detected. Also presented is a host event table displaying the commands executed.