In the ever-changing cybersecurity landscape, it is becoming more important to identify and understand the tactics, techniques, and procedures (TTPs) used by threat actors. This intelligence can be used to corroborate attacks with known attackers and support counterintelligence activities.
TTPs can also aid in identifying and tracking the cyber-warfare efforts of nation-state adversaries. This intelligence can help researchers correlate an attack to a specific country of origin, providing insights that may aid in the maturation of an offensive campaign.
Tactics, Techniques, and Procedures TTP Definition
TTPs are a cybersecurity term that describes three components in a process used by malicious or benign actors to develop threats and plan cyberattacks. They are the “tactical goal,” the “technique,” and the “procedure” used by an attacker to accomplish their objective. Tactical goals are usually the purpose of the attack, such as gaining unauthorized access to sensitive data, performing lateral movement within a network, or compromising a website. Techniques are the methods or tools that an adversary uses to achieve the tactical goal.
Techniques also include sub-techniques, which are often more specific in implementation. A common example is phishing emails, which can be used to collect information on targeted networks. Procedures are the more detailed, step-by-step instructions an adversary would follow to execute a tactic. This could be as simple as logging into a server that allows remote connections like Telnet and SSH.
Having an understanding of TTPs can help you better identify and respond to attackers in your environment. For example, if an attacker logs into a server that allows remote connections and is later seen attacking high-value assets, it can help you know who’s behind the attack. TTPs are also critical to threat intelligence that security researchers and analysts collect from their organizations. It includes information on what malware the attackers used to penetrate a network, the steps they took to execute an attack, and more.
It can help your security teams prioritize vulnerabilities and remediation strategies. In addition, you can map adversary tactics and techniques to TTPs to better understand how those attacks could affect your systems.
TTPs are important to consider when defending marketplaces and their users from fraud, money laundering, or terrorist financing. In addition to having the right Trust and Safety team members, automatically identifying these abusive activity patterns with a good TTPs solution can save your business from losing valuable assets to nefarious hackers.
What is Tactics, Techniques, and Procedures TTP?
Tactics, techniques, and procedures (TTP) are a must-have in today’s digital security and privacy world. Essentially TTPs are the foundation for a sound cybersecurity strategy and a solid IT infrastructure. A TTPs review helps identify weaknesses in an organization’s IT infrastructure and mitigates the nefarious wares within. The best part about TTPs is that they are standardized and can be used for any size of the company to ensure the safety of sensitive data. This allows IT departments to be able to prioritize resources towards addressing the more urgent threats.
The most notable drawback to TTPs is that it can take some time to acquaint the IT department with the latest and greatest security tools and protocols. Thankfully, some companies like Microsoft and Cisco have created TTPs that are scalable to any size of the organization that wants them. The most important part of any TTPs solution is to ensure that you have a team of competent people with the right tools in the right place at the right time.
Tactics, Techniques, and Procedures
TTPs are used by cybersecurity professionals to understand a cyber attack in order to detect and mitigate it. These three elements (tactics, techniques, and procedures) can help security teams identify and neutralize attacks early in their lifecycle so that they don’t cause serious damage. Tactics describe the “what” of a cyber attack or what an attacker is trying to achieve with their actions. For example, a hacker’s goal might be stealing important data or compromising your website.
Techniques are the methods an attacker uses to accomplish their goals. These may include phishing, ransomware, or malware. Procedures are the steps an adversary takes to execute their technique, which can be complex. For example, an attacker might send an email attachment that includes a zero-day exploit and payload to install malicious software on the target’s computer.
Using TTP analysis, threat intelligence can aid in the development of a unique profile of a particular attacker and his or her attack. This profile can then be used to determine what other tools might be available to the attacker and, therefore, to prevent it from happening again. This approach is similar to how law enforcement investigates physical attacks, where they can fingerprint a suspect’s behavior and use that information in court. In the same way, a cybersecurity team can use TTPs to analyze a cyber attack and determine its origin.
TTPs are also a useful tool to help with the attribution of foreign nation-state attackers. For example, if an attack has been perpetrated by a nation-state group that consistently targets the U.S. Department of Defense, TTP analysis can help determine that this is the group’s way to gather policy and government-based classified information. TTPs are important to understand because they provide cybersecurity practitioners with information about how threat actors operate and why they choose to attack an organization. TTPs can also help security teams better defend their networks and protect the sensitive data that they hold.