Unusual Child Processes of RunDLL32edit

Identifies child processes of unusual instances of RunDLL32 where the command line parameters were suspicious. Misuse of RunDLL32 could indicate malicious activity.

Rule type: eql

Rule indices:

  • logs-endpoint.events.*
  • winlogbeat-*
  • logs-windows.*

Severity: high

Risk score: 21

Runs every: 30m

Searches indices from: now-60m (Date Math format, see also Additional look-back time)

Maximum alerts per execution: 100

References: None


  • Elastic
  • Host
  • Windows
  • Threat Detection
  • Defense Evasion

Version: 4

Rule authors:

  • Elastic

Rule license: Elastic License v2

Rule queryedit

sequence with maxspan=1h
  [process where event.type in ("start", "process_started") and
     (process.name : "rundll32.exe" or process.pe.original_file_name == "RUNDLL32.EXE") and
      process.args_count == 1
  ] by process.entity_id
  [process where event.type in ("start", "process_started") and process.parent.name : "rundll32.exe"
  ] by process.parent.entity_id