Protecting Against Advanced Persistent Threats with Splunk SIEM

Branded Content by Cosmic Press

Image Source 

What Is An Advanced Persistent Threat (APT)?

Advanced persistent threats (APTs) are a type of cyber attack that is designed to gain unauthorized access to a network or system and maintain a presence there for an extended period of time, often for months or even years. APTs are often highly targeted and stealthy, and they are typically carried out by nation-states or other highly sophisticated actors.

APTs differ from other types of cyber attacks in that they are not limited to a single event or objective, but rather are part of a long-term campaign with the goal of gaining persistent access to a target’s systems and extracting valuable information over an extended period of time. APTs often involve multiple stages, including initial access, command and control, and exfiltration of data.

APTs can be difficult to detect and defend against because they are often tailored to specific targets and use advanced techniques to evade detection. These techniques may include the use of custom malware, social engineering, and other tactics that are designed to bypass traditional security controls.

How Advanced Persistent Threats Work

APT attacks are complex and involve multiple stages. The attack kill chain, a model that describes the stages of a cyber attack from initial access to the final objective, can be used to understand how advanced persistent threat (APT) attacks work, as well as defend against them.

Here are the key stages of an APT attack:

  1. Reconnaissance: The attacker gathers information about the target, such as its network infrastructure, software and hardware, and potential vulnerabilities.
  2. Weaponization: The attacker creates or acquires the tools and resources needed to carry out the attack, such as malware, exploits, or social engineering tactics.
  3. Delivery: The attacker delivers the weaponized attack to the target, such as by sending a phishing email or exploiting a vulnerability in a website.
  4. Exploitation: The attacker exploits a vulnerability in the target’s systems or uses the weaponized attack to gain access.
  5. Installation: The attacker installs malware or other tools on the target’s systems to establish a foothold and maintain control.
  6. Command and control: The attacker establishes a connection with the malware or other tools installed on the target’s systems, allowing them to remotely control and manipulate the compromised systems.
  7. Actions on objectives: The attacker carries out their objectives, such as exfiltrating data or disrupting services.

What is Splunk Enterprise Security (Splunk SIEM)?

Splunk Enterprise Security (ES) is a security analytics and incident response platform that is built on top of the Splunk software platform. Splunk ES is designed to help organizations detect, investigate, and respond to security threats and incidents.

Splunk Enterprise Security is used by organizations in a variety of industries, including finance, healthcare, retail, and government. It is designed to be scalable and can handle high volumes of data from multiple sources.

Splunk ES includes a range of features and tools that are specifically designed for security operations, including:

  • Security analytics: Splunk ES includes a variety of security analytics tools that can be used to identify patterns, trends, and anomalies in data. This can help security teams to detect threats and identify potential vulnerabilities.
  • Incident response: Splunk ES includes a range of incident response capabilities, including the ability to investigate and triage security incidents, as well as automate and streamline incident response processes.
  • Security content: Splunk ES includes a library of pre-built security content, such as dashboards, reports, and alerts, which can be used to monitor and analyze data for security purposes.
  • Integration with other security tools: Splunk ES can be integrated with a variety of other security tools, such as intrusion detection and prevention systems (IDPS), vulnerability scanners, and firewalls, to provide a more comprehensive view of an organization’s security posture.

Protecting Against Advanced Persistent Threats with Splunk SIEM

Splunk Enterprise Security (ES) includes a range of features and tools that can be used to detect and defend against advanced persistent threat (APT) attacks. Here is how each of these components can be used to protect against APTs:

  • Event collection and aggregation module: The event collection and aggregation module in Splunk ES is responsible for collecting and aggregating data from a variety of sources, including log files, network traffic data, and security events. By collecting and aggregating this data, Splunk ES can provide a comprehensive view of an organization’s security posture, making it easier to identify potential APT attacks.
  • Event format module: The event format module in Splunk ES is responsible for parsing and normalizing data from different sources, making it easier to search and analyze. By standardizing the format of data, Splunk ES can more easily identify patterns and trends that may indicate an APT attack.
  • Event correlation module: The event correlation module in Splunk ES is responsible for analyzing data to identify relationships and correlations between different events. This can be used to detect APT attacks by identifying patterns of behavior that may be indicative of an attack, such as repeated failed login attempts or unusual network traffic patterns.
  • Machine learning toolkit: The machine learning toolkit in Splunk ES includes a variety of machine learning algorithms that can be used to analyze data and identify patterns and trends that may be indicative of an APT attack. These algorithms can be used to automatically identify and classify security events, reducing the need for manual analysis and enabling faster incident response.


Splunk Enterprise Security provides a range of tools and capabilities that can be used to detect and defend against APT attacks. By collecting and aggregating data from multiple sources, analyzing and normalizing the data, and using machine learning algorithms to identify patterns and trends, Splunk ES can help organizations to detect and respond to APT attacks more effectively.

Branded content furnished by our promotional partners. The Daily Sundial editorial staff is not involved in its production. Content does not reflect the views or opinions of the editorial staff.