Launch Agent Creation or Modification and Immediate Loadingedit

An adversary can establish persistence by installing a new launch agent that executes at login by using launchd or launchctl to load a plist into the appropriate directories.

Rule type: eql

Rule indices:


Severity: low

Risk score: 21

Runs every: 5m

Searches indices from: now-9m (Date Math format, see also Additional look-back time)

Maximum alerts per execution: 100



  • Domain: Endpoint
  • OS: macOS
  • Use Case: Threat Detection
  • Tactic: Persistence
  • Data Source: Elastic Defend

Version: 105

Rule authors:

  • Elastic

Rule license: Elastic License v2

Rule queryedit

sequence by with maxspan=1m
 [file where host.os.type == "macos" and event.type != "deletion" and
  file.path : ("/System/Library/LaunchAgents/*", "/Library/LaunchAgents/*", "/Users/*/Library/LaunchAgents/*")
 [process where host.os.type == "macos" and event.type in ("start", "process_started") and == "launchctl" and process.args == "load"]