Prevent Downlink: Inhibit Ground System Functionality

Threat actors may utilize ground-system presence to inhibit the ground system software's ability to process (or display) telemetry, effectively leaving ground controllers unaware of vehicle activity during this time. Telemetry is the only method in which ground controllers can monitor the health and stability of the spacecraft while in orbit. By disabling this downlink, threat actors may be able to stop mitigations from taking place.

ID: DE-0002.01
Sub-technique of:  DE-0002
Notional Risk (H | M | L):  21 | 17 | 12
Related Aerospace Threat IDs:  SV-MA-7 | SV-AV-1
Related MITRE ATT&CK TTPs:  T1562.006
Created: 2022/10/19
Last Modified: 2024/02/29


ID Name Description NIST Rev5 D3FEND ISO 27001
CM0002 COMSEC A component of cybersecurity to deny unauthorized persons information derived from telecommunications and to ensure the authenticity of such telecommunications. COMSEC includes cryptographic security, transmission security, emissions security, and physical security of COMSEC material. It is imperative to utilize secure communication protocols with strong cryptographic mechanisms to prevent unauthorized disclosure of, and detect changes to, information during transmission. Systems should also maintain the confidentiality and integrity of information during preparation for transmission and during reception. Spacecraft should not employ a mode of operations where cryptography on the TT&C link can be disabled (i.e., crypto-bypass mode). The cryptographic mechanisms should identify and reject wireless transmissions that are deliberate attempts to achieve imitative or manipulative communications deception based on signal parameters. AC-17 AC-17(1) AC-17(10) AC-17(10) AC-17(2) AC-18 AC-18(1) AC-2(11) AC-3(10) CA-3 IA-4(9) IA-5 IA-5(7) IA-7 PL-8 PL-8(1) SA-8(18) SA-8(19) SA-9(6) SC-10 SC-12 SC-12(1) SC-12(2) SC-12(3) SC-12(6) SC-13 SC-16(3) SC-28(1) SC-28(3) SC-7 SC-7(10) SC-7(11) SC-7(18) SC-7(5) SC-8(1) SC-8(3) SI-10 SI-10(3) SI-10(5) SI-10(6) SI-19(4) SI-3(8) D3-ET D3-MH D3-MAN D3-MENCR D3-NTF D3-ITF D3-OTF D3-CH D3-DTP D3-NTA D3-CAA D3-DNSTA D3-IPCTA D3-NTCD D3-RTSD D3-PHDURA D3-PMAD D3-CSPP D3-MA D3-SMRA D3-SRA A.5.14 A.6.7 A.8.1 A.8.16 A.5.14 A.8.1 A.8.20 A.5.14 A.8.21 A.5.16 A.5.17 A.5.8 A.5.14 A.8.16 A.8.20 A.8.22 A.8.23 A.8.26 A.8.12 A.5.33 A.8.20 A.8.24 A.8.24 A.8.26 A.5.31 A.5.33 A.8.11
CM0073 Traffic Flow Analysis Defense Utilizing techniques to assure traffic flow security and confidentiality to mitigate or defeat traffic analysis attacks or reduce the value of any indicators or adversary inferences. This may be a subset of COMSEC protections, but the techniques would be applied where required to links that carry TT&C and/or data transmissions (to include on-board the spacecraft) where applicable given value and attacker capability. Techniques may include but are not limited to methods to pad or otherwise obfuscate traffic volumes/duration and/or periodicity, concealment of routing information and/or endpoints, or methods to frustrate statistical analysis. SC-8 SI-4(15) D3-NTA D3-ANAA D3-RPA D3-NTCD A.5.10 A.5.14 A.8.20 A.8.26
CM0050 On-board Message Encryption In addition to authentication on-board the spacecraft bus, encryption is also recommended to protect the confidentiality of the data traversing the bus. AC-4 AC-4(23) AC-4(24) AC-4(26) AC-4(31) AC-4(32) PL-8 PL-8(1) SA-3 SA-8 SA-8(18) SA-8(19) SA-8(9) SA-9(6) SC-13 SC-16 SC-16(1) SC-16(2) SC-16(3) SC-8(1) SC-8(3) SI-19(4) SI-4(10) SI-4(25) D3-MH D3-MENCR D3-ET A.5.14 A.8.22 A.8.23 A.8.11 A.5.8 A.5.2 A.5.8 A.8.25 A.8.31 A.8.27 A.8.28 A.5.33 A.8.24 A.8.26 A.5.31 A.8.11
CM0005 Ground-based Countermeasures This countermeasure is focused on the protection of terrestrial assets like ground networks and development environments/contractor networks, etc. Traditional detection technologies and capabilities would be applicable here. Utilizing resources from NIST CSF to properly secure these environments using identify, protect, detect, recover, and respond is likely warranted. Additionally, NISTIR 8401 may provide resources as well since it was developed to focus on ground-based security for space systems ( Furthermore, the MITRE ATT&CK framework provides IT focused TTPs and their mitigations Several recommended NIST 800-53 Rev5 controls are provided for reference when designing ground systems/networks. AC-1 AC-10 AC-11 AC-11(1) AC-12 AC-12(1) AC-14 AC-16 AC-16(6) AC-17 AC-17 AC-17(1) AC-17(10) AC-17(2) AC-17(3) AC-17(4) AC-17(6) AC-17(9) AC-18 AC-18 AC-18(1) AC-18(3) AC-18(4) AC-18(5) AC-19 AC-19(5) AC-2 AC-2 AC-2(1) AC-2(11) AC-2(12) AC-2(13) AC-2(2) AC-2(3) AC-2(4) AC-2(9) AC-20 AC-20(1) AC-20(2) AC-20(3) AC-20(5) AC-21 AC-22 AC-3 AC-3(11) AC-3(13) AC-3(15) AC-3(4) AC-4 AC-4(23) AC-4(24) AC-4(25) AC-4(26) AC-4(31) AC-4(32) AC-6 AC-6(1) AC-6(10) AC-6(2) AC-6(3) AC-6(5) AC-6(8) AC-6(9) AC-7 AC-8 AT-2(4) AT-2(4) AT-2(5) AT-2(6) AT-3 AT-3(2) AT-4 AU-10 AU-11 AU-12 AU-12(1) AU-12(3) AU-14 AU-14(1) AU-14(3) AU-2 AU-3 AU-3(1) AU-4 AU-4(1) AU-5 AU-5(1) AU-5(2) AU-5(5) AU-6 AU-6(1) AU-6(3) AU-6(4) AU-6(5) AU-6(6) AU-7 AU-7(1) AU-8 AU-9 AU-9(2) AU-9(3) AU-9(4) CA-3 CA-3 CA-3(6) CA-3(7) CA-7 CA-7(1) CA-7(6) CA-8 CA-8(1) CA-8(1) CA-9 CM-10(1) CM-11 CM-11 CM-11(2) CM-11(3) CM-12 CM-12(1) CM-14 CM-2 CM-2(2) CM-2(3) CM-2(7) CM-3 CM-3(1) CM-3(2) CM-3(4) CM-3(5) CM-3(6) CM-3(7) CM-3(7) CM-3(8) CM-4 CM-5(1) CM-5(5) CM-6 CM-6(1) CM-6(2) CM-7 CM-7(1) CM-7(2) CM-7(3) CM-7(5) CM-7(8) CM-7(8) CM-7(9) CM-8 CM-8(1) CM-8(2) CM-8(3) CM-8(4) CM-9 CP-10 CP-10(2) CP-10(4) CP-2 CP-2 CP-2(2) CP-2(5) CP-2(8) CP-3(1) CP-4(1) CP-4(2) CP-4(5) CP-8 CP-8(1) CP-8(2) CP-8(3) CP-8(4) CP-8(5) CP-9 CP-9(1) CP-9(2) CP-9(3) IA-11 IA-12 IA-12(1) IA-12(2) IA-12(3) IA-12(4) IA-12(5) IA-12(6) IA-2 IA-2(1) IA-2(12) IA-2(2) IA-2(5) IA-2(6) IA-2(8) IA-3 IA-3(1) IA-4 IA-4(9) IA-5 IA-5(1) IA-5(13) IA-5(14) IA-5(2) IA-5(7) IA-5(8) IA-6 IA-7 IA-8 IR-2 IR-2(2) IR-2(3) IR-3 IR-3(1) IR-3(2) IR-3(3) IR-4 IR-4(1) IR-4(10) IR-4(11) IR-4(11) IR-4(12) IR-4(13) IR-4(14) IR-4(3) IR-4(4) IR-4(5) IR-4(6) IR-4(7) IR-4(8) IR-5 IR-5(1) IR-6 IR-6(1) IR-6(2) IR-7 IR-7(1) IR-8 MA-2 MA-3 MA-3(1) MA-3(2) MA-3(3) MA-4 MA-4(1) MA-4(3) MA-4(6) MA-4(7) MA-5(1) MA-6 MA-7 MP-2 MP-3 MP-4 MP-5 MP-6 MP-6(3) MP-7 PE-3(7) PL-10 PL-11 PL-8 PL-8(1) PL-8(2) PL-9 PL-9 PM-11 PM-16(1) PM-17 PM-30 PM-30(1) PM-31 PM-32 RA-10 RA-3(1) RA-3(2) RA-3(2) RA-3(3) RA-3(4) RA-5 RA-5(10) RA-5(11) RA-5(2) RA-5(4) RA-5(5) RA-7 RA-9 RA-9 SA-10 SA-10(1) SA-10(2) SA-10(7) SA-11 SA-11 SA-11(2) SA-11(4) SA-11(7) SA-11(9) SA-15 SA-15(3) SA-15(7) SA-17 SA-17 SA-2 SA-2 SA-22 SA-3 SA-3 SA-3(1) SA-3(2) SA-3(2) SA-4 SA-4 SA-4(1) SA-4(10) SA-4(12) SA-4(2) SA-4(3) SA-4(3) SA-4(5) SA-4(5) SA-4(7) SA-4(9) SA-4(9) SA-5 SA-8 SA-8 SA-8(14) SA-8(15) SA-8(18) SA-8(21) SA-8(22) SA-8(23) SA-8(24) SA-8(29) SA-8(9) SA-9 SA-9 SA-9(1) SA-9(2) SA-9(6) SA-9(7) SC-10 SC-12 SC-12(1) SC-12(6) SC-13 SC-15 SC-16(2) SC-16(3) SC-18(1) SC-18(2) SC-18(3) SC-18(4) SC-2 SC-2(2) SC-20 SC-21 SC-22 SC-23 SC-23(1) SC-23(3) SC-23(5) SC-24 SC-28 SC-28(1) SC-28(3) SC-3 SC-38 SC-39 SC-4 SC-45 SC-45(1) SC-45(1) SC-45(2) SC-49 SC-5 SC-5(1) SC-5(2) SC-5(3) SC-50 SC-51 SC-7 SC-7(10) SC-7(11) SC-7(12) SC-7(13) SC-7(14) SC-7(18) SC-7(21) SC-7(25) SC-7(29) SC-7(3) SC-7(4) SC-7(5) SC-7(5) SC-7(7) SC-7(8) SC-7(9) SC-8 SC-8(1) SC-8(2) SC-8(5) SI-10 SI-10(3) SI-10(6) SI-11 SI-12 SI-14(3) SI-16 SI-19(4) SI-2 SI-2(2) SI-2(3) SI-2(6) SI-21 SI-3 SI-3 SI-3(10) SI-3(10) SI-4 SI-4(1) SI-4(10) SI-4(11) SI-4(12) SI-4(13) SI-4(14) SI-4(15) SI-4(16) SI-4(17) SI-4(2) SI-4(20) SI-4(22) SI-4(23) SI-4(24) SI-4(25) SI-4(4) SI-4(5) SI-5 SI-5(1) SI-6 SI-7 SI-7 SI-7(1) SI-7(17) SI-7(2) SI-7(5) SI-7(7) SI-7(8) SR-1 SR-1 SR-10 SR-11 SR-11 SR-11(1) SR-11(2) SR-11(3) SR-12 SR-2 SR-2(1) SR-3 SR-3(1) SR-3(2) SR-3(2) SR-3(3) SR-4 SR-4(1) SR-4(2) SR-4(3) SR-4(4) SR-5 SR-5 SR-5(1) SR-5(2) SR-6 SR-6(1) SR-6(1) SR-7 SR-7 SR-8 SR-9 SR-9(1) Nearly all D3FEND Techniques apply to Ground 5.2 5.3 7.5.1 7.5.2 7.5.3 A.5.1 A.5.2 A.5.4 A.5.15 A.5.31 A.5.36 A.5.37 A.5.16 A.5.18 A.8.2 A.8.16 A.5.15 A.5.33 A.8.3 A.8.4 A.8.18 A.8.20 A.8.2 A.8.4 A.5.14 A.8.22 A.8.23 A.8.11 A.8.10 A.5.15 A.8.2 A.8.18 A.8.5 A.8.5 A.7.7 A.8.1 A.5.14 A.6.7 A.8.1 A.8.16 A.5.14 A.8.1 A.8.20 A.5.14 A.7.9 A.8.1 A.5.14 A.7.9 A.8.20 A.6.3 A.8.15 A.8.15 A.8.6 A.5.25 A.6.8 A.8.15 A.7.4 A.8.17 A.5.33 A.8.15 A.5.28 A.8.15 A.8.15 A.8.15 A.5.14 A.8.21 9.1 9.3.2 9.3.3 A.5.36 9.2.2 A.8.9 A.8.9 8.1 9.3.3 A.8.9 A.8.32 A.8.9 A.8.9 A.8.9 A.8.9 A.8.19 A.8.19 A.5.9 A.8.9 A.5.2 A.8.9 A.8.19 7.5.1 7.5.2 7.5.3 A.5.2 A.5.29 A.8.1 A.8.6 A.5.30 A.5.30 A.5.29 A.7.11 A.5.29 A.5.33 A.8.13 A.5.29 A.5.16 A.5.16 A.5.16 A.5.17 A.8.5 A.5.16 A.6.3 A.5.25 A.5.26 A.5.27 A.8.16 A.5.5 A.6.8 7.5.1 7.5.2 7.5.3 A.5.24 A.7.10 A.7.13 A.8.10 A.8.10 A.8.16 A.8.10 A.7.13 A.5.10 A.7.7 A.7.10 A.5.13 A.5.10 A.7.7 A.7.10 A.8.10 A.5.10 A.7.9 A.7.10 A.5.10 A.7.10 A.7.14 A.8.10 A.5.10 A.7.10 A.5.8 A.5.7 4.4 6.2 7.5.1 7.5.2 7.5.3 10.2 4.4 6.2 7.4 7.5.1 7.5.2 7.5.3 9.1 9.2.2 10.1 10.2 A.8.8 6.1.3 8.3 10.2 A.5.22 A.5.7 A.5.2 A.5.8 A.8.25 A.8.31 A.8.33 8.1 A.5.8 A.5.20 A.5.23 A.8.29 A.8.30 A.8.28 7.5.1 7.5.2 7.5.3 A.5.37 A.8.27 A.8.28 A.5.2 A.5.4 A.5.8 A.5.14 A.5.22 A.5.23 A.8.21 A.8.9 A.8.28 A.8.30 A.8.32 A.8.29 A.8.30 A.5.8 A.8.25 A.8.25 A.8.27 A.8.6 A.5.14 A.8.16 A.8.20 A.8.22 A.8.23 A.8.26 A.8.23 A.8.12 A.5.10 A.5.14 A.8.20 A.8.26 A.5.33 A.8.20 A.8.24 A.8.24 A.8.26 A.5.31 A.5.14 A.5.10 A.5.33 A.6.8 A.8.8 A.8.32 A.8.7 A.8.16 A.8.16 A.8.16 A.8.16 A.5.6 A.8.11 A.8.10 5.2 5.3 7.5.1 7.5.2 7.5.3 A.5.1 A.5.2 A.5.4 A.5.19 A.5.31 A.5.36 A.5.37 A.5.19 A.5.20 A.5.21 A.8.30 A.5.20 A.5.21 A.5.21 A.8.30 A.5.20 A.5.21 A.5.23 A.8.29 A.5.22 A.5.22
CM0070 Alternate Communications Paths Establish alternate communications paths to reduce the risk of all communications paths being affected by the same incident. AC-17 CP-2 CP-4(2) CP-8(3) PL-8 PL-8(1) SC-47 D3-NM D3-NTPM A.5.14 A.6.7 A.8.1 7.5.1 7.5.2 7.5.3 A.5.2 A.5.29 A.8.1 A.5.8