Assembly, Test, and Launch Operation Compromise

Threat actors may target the spacecraft hardware and/or software while the spacecraft is at Assembly, Test, and Launch Operation (ATLO). ATLO is often the first time pieces of the spacecraft are fully integrated and exchanging data across interfaces. Malware could propagate from infected devices across the integrated spacecraft. For example, test equipment (i.e., transient cyber asset) is often brought in for testing elements of the spacecraft. Additionally, varying levels of physical security is in place which may be a reduction in physical security typically seen during development. The ATLO environment should be considered a viable attack vector and the appropriate/equivalent security controls from the primary development environment should be implemented during ATLO as well.

ID: IA-0012
Related Aerospace Threat IDs:  SV-SP-10 | SV-AC-5
Related MITRE ATT&CK TTPs:  T0864
Created: 2022/10/19
Last Modified: 2022/10/19


ID Name Description NIST Rev5
CM0028 Tamper Protection Perform physical inspection of hardware to look for potential tampering. Leverage tamper proof protection where possible when shipping/receiving equipment. CA-8(3) CM-7(9) MA-7 PM-30 PM-30(1) RA-3(1) SA-10(3) SA-10(4) SC-51 SR-1 SR-1 SR-10 SR-11 SR-11(3) SR-2 SR-2(1) SR-3 SR-4(3) SR-4(4) SR-5 SR-5 SR-5(2) SR-6(1) SR-9 SR-9(1)
CM0052 Insider Threat Protection Establish policy and procedures to prevent individuals (i.e., insiders) from masquerading as individuals with valid access to areas where commanding of the spacecraft is possible. Establish an Insider Threat Program to aid in the prevention of people with authorized access performing malicious activities. AC-3(11) AC-3(13) AC-3(15) AC-6 AT-2 AT-2(2) AT-2(4) AT-2(5) AT-2(6) AU-10 AU-12 AU-13 AU-6 AU-7 CA-7 IA-12 IA-12(1) IA-12(2) IA-12(3) IA-12(4) IA-12(5) IA-12(6) IA-4 IR-2(3) IR-4 IR-4(6) IR-4(7) MA-7 MP-7 PE-2 PM-12 PM-14 PS-3 PS-4 PS-5 PS-8 RA-10 SC-38 SC-7 SI-4 SR-11(2)
CM0004 Development Environment Security In order to secure the development environment, the first step is understanding all the devices and people who interact with it. Maintain an accurate inventory of all people and assets that touch the development environment. Ensure strong multi-factor authentication is used across the development environment, especially for code repositories, as threat actors may attempt to sneak malicious code into software that's being built without being detected. Use zero-trust access controls to the code repositories where possible. For example, ensure the main branches in repositories are protected from injecting malicious code. A secure development environment requires change management, privilege management, auditing and in-depth monitoring across the environment. AC-20(5) AC-3(11) AC-3(13) AC-3(15) CA-8 CM-14 CM-2(2) CM-3(2) CM-3(7) CM-3(8) CM-4(1) CM-7(8) CM-7(8) CP-2(8) MA-7 PL-8(2) PM-30 PM-30(1) RA-3(1) RA-3(2) RA-5 RA-5(2) RA-9 SA-10 SA-10(4) SA-11 SA-11(1) SA-11(2) SA-11(2) SA-11(4) SA-11(5) SA-11(5) SA-11(6) SA-11(7) SA-11(7) SA-11(8) SA-15 SA-15(3) SA-15(5) SA-15(7) SA-15(8) SA-3 SA-3(1) SA-3(2) SA-4(3) SA-4(5) SC-38 SI-2 SI-2(6) SR-1 SR-1 SR-11 SR-2 SR-2(1) SR-3 SR-3(2) SR-4 SR-4(1) SR-4(2) SR-4(3) SR-4(4) SR-5 SR-5 SR-5(2) SR-6 SR-6(1) SR-6(1) SR-7
CM0023 Configuration Management Use automated mechanisms to maintain and validate baseline configuration to ensure the spacecraft's is up-to-date, complete, accurate, and readily available. CM-11(3) CM-3(7) CM-3(8) CM-5 MA-7 SA-10 SA-10(7) SR-11(2)
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(1) AC-17(10) AC-17(2) AC-17(3) AC-17(4) AC-17(6) AC-17(9) AC-18 AC-18(1) AC-18(3) AC-18(4) AC-18(5) AC-19 AC-19(5) 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(6) CA-3(7) CA-7 CA-7(1) CA-7(6) CA-8 CA-9 CM-10(1) 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(5) 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(2) CP-2(5) CP-2(8) CP-3(1) 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(3) IR-4 IR-4(1) 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-7 IR-7(1) 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-5(4) 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(7) SA-11 SA-11(2) SA-11(9) SA-15 SA-15(3) SA-15(7) SA-17 SA-2 SA-22 SA-3 SA-3(1) SA-3(2) SA-3(2) SA-4 SA-4(1) SA-4(10) SA-4(12) SA-4(2) SA-4(3) SA-4(5) SA-4(7) SA-4(9) SA-5 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(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(11) 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-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-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(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)
CM0037 Disable Physical Ports Provide the capability for data connection ports or input/output devices (e.g., JTAG) to be disabled or removed prior to spacecraft operations. MA-7 SC-41 SC-7(14)