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Cgroups notify_on_release file modification


The CgroupNotifyOnReleaseModification signature identifies modifications to the notify_on_release file within Cgroups. Unauthorized or unintended changes to this file may suggest attempts to escape from a container or to exploit the Cgroups feature for malicious purposes.


Cgroups (Control Groups) is a Linux kernel feature that limits, accounts for, and isolates the resource usage (CPU, memory, disk I/O, etc.) of a collection of processes. The notify_on_release file within Cgroups specifies if a notification should be sent when the resources of the Cgroup are no longer in use.

Manipulating this file could allow adversaries to be notified when a containerized process completes, potentially giving them an opportunity to exploit the released resources. This may enable unauthorized actions, like container escape or privilege escalation.


The main goal of this signature is to detect and raise alerts on unauthorized or suspicious modifications to the notify_on_release file within Cgroups. By monitoring such changes, this signature aids in the early detection and prevention of potential container escape attempts or other malicious activities leveraging Cgroup mechanisms.


  • ID: TRC-106
  • Version: 1
  • Name: Cgroups notify_on_release file modification
  • EventName: cgroup_notify_on_release
  • Description: Monitors for attempts to modify the notify_on_release file in Cgroups. Unauthorized changes might hint at adversarial efforts to exploit Cgroup functionalities, like trying to escape from containers.
  • Properties:
  • Severity: 3
  • Category: privilege-escalation
  • Technique: Escape to Host
  • Kubernetes_Technique: N/A
  • id: attack-pattern--4a5b7ade-8bb5-4853-84ed-23f262002665
  • external_id: T1611


On detection of unauthorized or suspicious activities related to the notify_on_release file, the signature produces a Finding which contains details about the event and the associated threat metadata.

Events Used

The signature primarily listens to the security_file_open event, especially from the container origin. This event provides insights into attempts to access or modify files, and in this context, specifically watches for interactions with the notify_on_release file in Cgroups.