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CAPEC-523: Malicious Software Implanted

Attack Pattern ID: 523
Abstraction: Standard
Status: Draft
Presentation Filter:
+ Description
An attacker implants malicious software into the system in the supply chain distribution channel, with purpose of causing malicious disruption or allowing for additional compromise when the system is deployed.
+ Likelihood Of Attack


+ Typical Severity


+ Relationships
Section HelpThis table shows the other attack patterns and high level categories that are related to this attack pattern. These relationships are defined as ChildOf and ParentOf, and give insight to similar items that may exist at higher and lower levels of abstraction. In addition, relationships such as CanFollow, PeerOf, and CanAlsoBe are defined to show similar attack patterns that the user may want to explore.
ChildOfMeta Attack PatternMeta Attack Pattern - A meta level attack pattern in CAPEC is a decidedly abstract characterization of a specific methodology or technique used in an attack. A meta attack pattern is often void of a specific technology or implementation and is meant to provide an understanding of a high level approach. A meta level attack pattern is a generalization of related group of standard level attack patterns. Meta level attack patterns are particularly useful for architecture and design level threat modeling exercises.439Manipulation During Distribution
Section HelpThis table shows the views that this attack pattern belongs to and top level categories within that view.
+ Prerequisites
Physical access to the system after it has left the manufacturer but before it is deployed at the victim location.
+ Skills Required
[Level: High]
Advanced knowledge of the design of the system and it's operating system components and subcomponents.
[Level: High]
Malicious software creation.
+ Example Instances
An attacker has created a piece of malicious software designed to function as a backdoor in a system that is to be deployed at the victim location. During shipment of the system, the attacker has physical access to the system at a loading dock of an integrator for a short time. The attacker unpacks and powers up the system and installs the malicious piece of software, and configures it to run upon system boot. The system is repackaged and returned to its place on the loading dock, and is shipped and installed at the victim location with the malicious software in place, allowing the attacker to bypass firewalls and remotely gain access to the victim's network for further malicious activities.
+ References
[REF-439] John F. Miller. "Supply Chain Attack Framework and Attack Patterns". The MITRE Corporation. 2013. <>.
+ Content History
Submission DateSubmitterOrganization
2014-06-23CAPEC Content TeamThe MITRE Corporation
Modification DateModifierOrganization
2015-11-09CAPEC Content TeamThe MITRE Corporation
Updated Typical_Likelihood_of_Exploit
2020-07-30CAPEC Content TeamThe MITRE Corporation
Updated Related_Attack_Patterns
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Page Last Updated or Reviewed: December 17, 2020