Common Attack Pattern Enumeration and Classification
A Community Resource for Identifying and Understanding Attacks
An attacker with access to an open source code project and knowledge of its particular use for in a system being developed, manufactured, or supported for the victim, can insert malicious code into the open source software used for math libraries in anticipation of inclusion into the system for the purpose of disruption or further compromise within the victim organization.
The nature of these type of attacks involve a coordinated effort between well-funded multiple attackers, and sometimes require physical access to successfully complete an attack. As a result these types of attacks are not launched on a large scale against any potential victim, but are typically highly targeted against victims who are often targeted and may have rather sophisticated cyber defenses already in place.
An attacker with access to an open source code project introduces a hard-to-find bug in the software that allows under very specific conditions for encryption to be disabled on data streams. The attacker commits the change to the code which is picked up by a manufacturer who develops VPN software. It is eventually deployed at the victim's location where the very specific conditions are met, and the attacker is able to sniff plaintext traffic thought to be encrypted, allowing the attacker to gain access to sensitive data of the victim.
Skill or Knowledge Level: High
Advanced knowledge about the inclusion and specific usage of an open source code project within system being targeted for infiltration.
[R.538.1] [REF-50] John F. Miller. "Supply Chain Attack Framework and Attack Patterns". The MITRE Corporation. 2013. <http://www.mitre.org/sites/default/files/publications/supply-chain-attack-framework-14-0228.pdf>.
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