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T1053 Scheduled Task/Job

Adversaries may abuse task scheduling functionality to facilitate initial or recurring execution of malicious code. Utilities exist within all major operating systems to schedule programs or scripts to be executed at a specified date and time. A task can also be scheduled on a remote system, provided the proper authentication is met (ex: RPC and file and printer sharing in Windows environments). Scheduling a task on a remote system typically may require being a member of an admin or otherwise privileged group on the remote system.2

Adversaries may use task scheduling to execute programs at system startup or on a scheduled basis for persistence. These mechanisms can also be abused to run a process under the context of a specified account (such as one with elevated permissions/privileges). Similar to System Binary Proxy Execution, adversaries have also abused task scheduling to potentially mask one-time execution under a trusted system process.1

Item Value
ID T1053
Sub-techniques T1053.002, T1053.003, T1053.005, T1053.006, T1053.007
Tactics TA0002, TA0003, TA0004
Platforms Containers, Linux, Windows, macOS
Permissions required Administrator, SYSTEM, User
Version 2.2
Created 31 May 2017
Last Modified 30 March 2023

Procedure Examples

ID Name Description
S1052 DEADEYE DEADEYE has used the scheduled tasks \Microsoft\Windows\PLA\Server Manager Performance Monitor, \Microsoft\Windows\Ras\ManagerMobility, \Microsoft\Windows\WDI\SrvSetupResults, and \Microsoft\Windows\WDI\USOShared
to establish persistence.8
G1006 Earth Lusca Earth Lusca used the command schtasks /Create /SC ONLOgon /TN WindowsUpdateCheck /TR “[file path]” /ru system for persistence.10
S0447 Lokibot Lokibot‘s second stage DLL has set a timer using “timeSetEvent” to schedule its next execution.7
S0125 Remsec Remsec schedules the execution one of its modules by creating a new scheduler task.6
S1034 StrifeWater StrifeWater has create a scheduled task named Mozilla\Firefox Default Browser Agent 409046Z0FF4A39CB for persistence.9


ID Mitigation Description
M1047 Audit Toolkits like the PowerSploit framework contain PowerUp modules that can be used to explore systems for permission weaknesses in scheduled tasks that could be used to escalate privileges. 4
M1028 Operating System Configuration Configure settings for scheduled tasks to force tasks to run under the context of the authenticated account instead of allowing them to run as SYSTEM. The associated Registry key is located at HKLM\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Control\Lsa\SubmitControl. The setting can be configured through GPO: Computer Configuration > [Policies] > Windows Settings > Security Settings > Local Policies > Security Options: Domain Controller: Allow server operators to schedule tasks, set to disabled. 5
M1026 Privileged Account Management Configure the Increase Scheduling Priority option to only allow the Administrators group the rights to schedule a priority process. This can be can be configured through GPO: Computer Configuration > [Policies] > Windows Settings > Security Settings > Local Policies > User Rights Assignment: Increase scheduling priority. 3
M1018 User Account Management Limit privileges of user accounts and remediate Privilege Escalation vectors so only authorized administrators can create scheduled tasks on remote systems.


ID Data Source Data Component
DS0017 Command Command Execution
DS0032 Container Container Creation
DS0022 File File Creation
DS0009 Process Process Creation
DS0003 Scheduled Job Scheduled Job Creation