CAPEC-537: Infiltration of Hardware Development Environment
Attack Pattern ID: 537
An attacker, leveraging the ability to manipulate components of primary support systems and tools within the development and production environments, inserts malicious software within the hardware and/or firmware development environment. The infiltration purpose is to alter developed hardware components in a system destined for deployment at the victim's organization, for the purpose of disruption or further compromise.
Likelihood Of Attack
The table below 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.
Standard Attack Pattern - A standard level attack pattern in CAPEC is focused on a specific methodology or technique used in an attack. It is often seen as a singular piece of a fully executed attack. A standard attack pattern is meant to provide sufficient details to understand the specific technique and how it attempts to accomplish a desired goal. A standard level attack pattern is a specific type of a more abstract meta level attack pattern.
The victim must use email or removable media from systems running the IDE (or systems adjacent to the IDE systems).
The victim must have a system running exploitable applications and/or a vulnerable configuration to allow for initial infiltration.
The attacker must have working knowledge of some if not all of the components involved in the IDE system as well as the infrastructure.
Intelligence about the manufacturer's operating environment and infrastructure.
Ability to develop, deploy, and maintain a stealth malicious backdoor program remotely in what is essentially a hostile environment.
Development skills to construct malicious attachments that can be used to exploit vulnerabilities in typical desktop applications or system configurations. The malicious attachments should be crafted well enough to bypass typical defensive systems (IDS, anti-virus, etc)
The attacker, knowing the manufacturer runs email on a system adjacent to the hardware development systems used for hardware and/or firmware design, sends a phishing email with a malicious attachment to the manufacturer. When viewed, the malicious attachment installs a backdoor that allows the attacker to remotely compromise the adjacent hardware development system from the manufacturer's workstation. The attacker is then able to exfiltrate and alter sensitive data on the hardware system, allowing for future compromise once the developed system is deployed at the victim location.
A Related Weakness relationship associates a weakness with this attack pattern. Each association implies a weakness that must exist for a given attack to be successful. If multiple weaknesses are associated with the attack pattern, then any of the weaknesses (but not necessarily all) may be present for the attack to be successful. Each related weakness is identified by a CWE identifier.
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Page Last Updated or Reviewed:
September 30, 2019