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Detecting domain trust discovery attempts


Domain trusts provide a mechanism for a domain to allow access to resources based on the authentication procedures of another domain, allowing the users of the trusted domain to access resources in the trusting domain. Attackers may attempt to perform domain trust discovery as the information they discover can help them to identify lateral movement opportunities in Windows multi-domain/forest environments.

Domain trusts can be enumerated using the DSEnumerateDomainTrusts() Win32 API call, .NET methods, and LDAP. The Windows utility Nltest is known to be used by adversaries to enumerate domain trusts.

These searches look for activity consistent with attackers attempting to perform domain trust discovery.

​Required data

Normalized endpoint data, populating the Processes node of the Endpoint data model in the Common Information Model (CIM). For information on installing and using the CIM, see the Common Information Model documentation.

How to use Splunk software for this use case

To deploy this use case, make sure that you have the Splunk ES Content Updates installed on your Splunk Enterprise Security deployment. This extensive content library empowers you to deploy out-of-the-box security detections and analytic stories to enhance your investigations and improve your security posture. If you do not have Splunk Enterprise Security, these detections will still give you an idea of what you can accomplish with SPL in the Splunk platform or with the free app, Splunk Security Essentials.

Some of the detections that can help you with this use case include:

Next steps

Splunk OnDemand Services: Use these credit-based services for direct access to Splunk technical consultants with a variety of technical services from a pre-defined catalog. Most customers have OnDemand Services per their license support plan. Engage the ODS team at if you require assistance.

In addition, these Splunk resources might help you understand and implement this use case: