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MITRE ATT&CK: Cybersecurity Tactics Guide for Microsoft 365
Jan 10, 2024 2:00 PM

MITRE ATT&CK: Cybersecurity Tactics Guide for Microsoft 365

by HubSite 365 about Peter Rising [MVP]

Microsoft MVP | Author | Speaker | YouTuber

AdministratorSecurityLearning SelectionM365 Admin

Explore Microsofts robust defense against ransomware with the MITRE ATT&CK framework in Microsoft 365. Learn to secure with top-tier XDR and EPP.

Key Points:

  1. MITRE ATT&CK® Framework: A global knowledge base of adversary tactics and techniques, crucial for understanding and analyzing cybersecurity threats.
  2. Microsoft’s Performance in MITRE Evaluations: Demonstrated strong detection and protection capabilities in the MITRE Engenuity Adversarial Tactics, Techniques, and Common Knowledge (ATT&CK®) Evaluations for four consecutive years.
  3. Evolving Threat Landscape: The necessity for comprehensive security solutions to address increasingly sophisticated cyber threats.
  4. Focus on Wizard Spider and Sandworm: Evaluation targeted these threat actors known for advanced human-operated ransomware campaigns.
  5. Microsoft 365 Defender’s Performance: Effective in detecting and preventing malicious activities across various stages of attacks.
  6. Key Strengths of Microsoft 365 Defender:
    • Industry-Leading XDR for simplified alert management.
    • Superior Endpoint Protection and Response capabilities.
    • Comprehensive protection across multiple platforms including Windows and Linux.
  7. Defense Against Human-Operated Ransomware: Emphasis on early prevention and diverse signal capture.
  8. Integrated Identity Threat Protection: Combining identity threats with endpoint data for enhanced security.
  9. Streamlining Investigation: Aggregating alerts into prioritized incidents for faster resolution.
  10. Mature Multi-Platform Protection: Extensive protection capabilities across various operating systems.
  11. Customer-Centered Approach: Product configuration aimed at real-world customer environments to avoid false positives.

For more information, visit MITRE website and Microsoft articles.

Unveiling the Secrets of the MITRE ATT&CK® Framework In this video, the presenter, Peter Rising, covers the essence of the MITRE ATT&CK® framework. He details its role in the Cybersecurity field and its application within Microsoft 365. The framework proves vital for understanding and combating cyber threats.

The independent MITRE Engenuity Adversarial Tactics, Techniques, and Common Knowledge (ATT&CK®) Evaluations have, for the fourth consecutive year, showcased Microsoft’s competencies in detection and protection. They incorporate an extended detection and response (XDR) system to address multiple facets of security demands. The most recent tests focused on sophisticated human-operated ransomware campaigns, specifically targeting adversaries Wizard Spider and Sandworm.

Testing involved comprehensive benchmarks and simulations across Windows and Linux platforms. It showed that Microsoft 365 Defender was capable of spotting and preventing malicious actions throughout significant stages of the attack process. Such capabilities utilize a wide range of security signals to facilitate Zero Trust control implementations and threat detection.

Microsoft's XDR has been highlighted for its ability to simplify alerts into actionable incidents. The Defender for Endpoint showed efficacy in pre-empting attacks and managing suspicious activities. Furthermore, multi-platform protection was accentuated with successful Linux defense, confirming Microsoft's solution maturity in diverse environments.

In tackling the rising wave of human-operated ransomware campaigns, a Microsoft 365 Defender has shown prominence. Prevention early in the attack cycle and signal capture from both devices and identities are integral to Microsoft's strategy. This comprehensive approach spans across an array of platforms, including Windows, Linux, Mac, iOS, and Android, providing robust security measures.

Integrating identity threat protection has proven to be a crucial element in combating human-operated ransomware. These tactics have evolved, and Microsoft 365 Defender employs a high level of detection and protection by merging endpoint and identity data. The solution currently safeguards hundreds of millions of identities, which was critical in evaluations.

Microsoft 365 Defender enhances the investigation process by gathering alerts into prioritized incidents. It streamlines the SecOps workflow and assists in remediating attacks rapidly. Moreover, Endpoint Detection and Response (EDR) empowers analysts with in-depth behavioral telemetry aiding in comprehending the attack's scope and origin.

Microsoft 365 Defender's incidents page correlates alerts, devices, users, and evidence, offering a comprehensive view of attack simulations. The ATT&CK scenario reproduced a threat actor's capacity to target varied environments and penetrate across platforms. Microsoft 365 Defender effectively detected and curbed these threats across all tested systems.

Microsoft's extended effort in covering non-Windows platforms is evident. Microsoft 365 Defender's coverage on desktop and mobile systems — inclusive of Linux, Mac, Windows, iOS, and Android — manifests their commitment to multifaceted network protection.

Peter Rising explains Microsoft's approach to testing, aiming for realistic customer scenarios. No on-the-spot tuning was performed to avoid excessive false positives. Microsoft thanks MITRE Engenuity for the esteemed collaboration and invites individuals to explore Microsoft Security solutions for superior protection against cyber threats.

The Importance of the MITRE ATT&CK® Framework

  • Provides a comprehensive overview of cyber threats
  • Essential for improving Cybersecurity measures within Microsoft 365
  • Key for understanding and defending against complex cyber attacks

For the fourth year in a row, the independent MITRE Engenuity Adversarial Tactics, Techniques, and Common Knowledge (ATT&CK®) Evaluations demonstrated Microsoft’s strong detection and protection capabilities thanks to our multi-platform extended detection and response (XDR) defenses.

The ever-evolving threat landscape requires robust Security solutions. These solutions should offer a holistic view of the attack, prevent and block it at all stages, and equip security operations with tools for complex threat remediation.

This year’s ATT&CK Evaluations concentrated on advanced threat actors Wizard Spider and Sandworm, known for sophisticated human-operated ransomware campaigns. The evaluations included detailed simulations highlighting Microsoft 365 Defender's successful detection and prevention at every attack stage.

Microsoft 365 Defender's Achievements

  • Detected and prevented malicious activity across all major attack stages
  • Offered comprehensive, technique-level coverage
  • Utilized rich threat intelligence from numerous security signals

The ATT&CK Evaluations results emphasized that Microsoft’s success was largely due to our Industry-leading XDR, which simplified alerts and provided rapid resolution.

Our solutions, including Microsoft Defender for Endpoint, quickly identified and contained suspicious activities, providing pre- and post-attack protection.

We showcased our capacity to protect diverse platforms including Windows and Linux, with strong behavioral and machine learning models ensuring protection against every major step.

Microsoft's Defense against Human-Operated Ransomware

  • Preemptive prevention at the attack's early stages
  • Extensive signal capture from devices and identities
  • Comprehensive coverage across various device ecosystems

Human-operated ransomware remains a significant danger, due to the attackers' sophisticated techniques and the potential for severe disruption. Microsoft's integrated solutions enable us to isolate and contain threats to minimize damage.

This integrated approach includes advanced identity threat protection, as shown during the evaluations that involved diverse advanced techniques such as pass-the-hash and Kerberoasting.

Microsoft 365 Defender aggregates and streamlines alerts into incidents for a simplified investigation experience, proving essential for rapid threat resolution and effective remediation.

Multi-Platform Protection and Customer-Centric Approach

  • Offers mature multi-platform protection
  • Covers popular operating systems and their versions
  • Holds a customer-first philosophy during evaluations

Microsoft 365 Defender’s capabilities extend across Windows, Linux, Mac, iOS, and Android, offering extensive protection and supporting our focus on non-Windows platforms.

We take a customer-oriented approach to tests, configuring our products as we expect our customers to, avoiding actions that might cause an increase in false positives.

We appreciate the opportunity provided by MITRE Engenuity to participate in this year’s evaluation, which has contributed significantly to our understanding of human-operated ransomware prevention.

Microsoft Security: A General Overview

The video emphasizes MITRE ATT&CK's crucial role in understanding sophisticated cyber threats and the efficacy of Microsoft 365 Defender in protecting against them. Microsoft's approach to cybersecurity is not just advanced and multi-layered but also sensitive to user-friendliness, minimizing the incidence of false positives. This balance of high-level Security and usability underlines Microsoft's commitment to both performance and the end-user experience. By focusing on multi-platform protection and a customer-centric approach, Microsoft demonstrates a robust defense strategy suitable for today’s dynamic cyber threat landscape.


Security - Mastering MITRE ATT&CK: Cybersecurity Tactics Guide


Read the full article Unveiling the Secrets of the MITRE ATT&CK® Framework


People also ask

What are the 3 main components of MITRE ATT&CK framework?

The three main components of the MITRE ATT&CK framework are Tactics, Techniques, and Procedures (TTPs). Tactics refer to the adversary's overall objectives or the 'why' of an ATT&CK. Techniques describe 'how' adversaries achieve their tactical objectives by detailing the technical methods they use. Procedures are the specific implementations or 'what' actions adversaries perform, which can vary between different threat actors or campaigns.

When was ATT&CK released to the public by MITRE?

The MITRE ATT&CK framework was initially released to the public in May 2015. Since then, it has been regularly updated to reflect the evolving threat landscape and to include new findings from real-world attack analysis.

What are the MITRE techniques?

MITRE techniques are a detailed collection of the various methods that adversaries may use to conduct their operations against targeted networks and systems. These techniques are categorized under the tactics that represent the adversary's goals, providing a matrix-like structure that correlates actions to their overarching intent. Techniques may involve exploiting system vulnerabilities, credential theft, lateral movement, data exfiltration, and more, each with specific examples and mitigation strategies.

What does MITRE stand for?

MITRE stands for 'Massachusetts Institute of Technology Research and Engineering.' MITRE Corporation is a not-for-profit organization that manages federally funded research and development centers supporting several U.S. government agencies. MITRE works across various government sectors to provide innovative solutions to national challenges.



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