CIS Microsoft Windows Server 2012 R2

CIS Microsoft Windows Server 2012 R2
Benchmark
v2.2.0 - 04-28-2016
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Table of Contents
Overview ............................................................................................................................................................... 22
Intended Audience ........................................................................................................................................ 22
Consensus Guidance..................................................................................................................................... 22
Typographical Conventions ...................................................................................................................... 23
Scoring Information ..................................................................................................................................... 23
Profile Definitions ......................................................................................................................................... 24
Acknowledgements ...................................................................................................................................... 26
Recommendations ............................................................................................................................................. 27
1 Account Policies ......................................................................................................................................... 27
1.1 Password Policy ................................................................................................................................. 27
1.1.1 (L1) Ensure 'Enforce password history' is set to '24 or more password(s)'
(Scored) ................................................................................................................................................... 27
1.1.2 (L1) Ensure 'Maximum password age' is set to '60 or fewer days, but not 0'
(Scored) ................................................................................................................................................... 30
1.1.3 (L1) Ensure 'Minimum password age' is set to '1 or more day(s)' (Scored) ..... 32
1.1.4 (L1) Ensure 'Minimum password length' is set to '14 or more character(s)'
(Scored) ................................................................................................................................................... 34
1.1.5 (L1) Ensure 'Password must meet complexity requirements' is set to 'Enabled'
(Scored) ................................................................................................................................................... 36
1.1.6 (L1) Ensure 'Store passwords using reversible encryption' is set to 'Disabled'
(Scored) ................................................................................................................................................... 39
1.2 Account Lockout Policy ................................................................................................................... 41
1.2.1 (L1) Ensure 'Account lockout duration' is set to '15 or more minute(s)'
(Scored) ................................................................................................................................................... 41
1.2.2 (L1) Ensure 'Account lockout threshold' is set to '10 or fewer invalid logon
attempt(s), but not 0' (Scored) ....................................................................................................... 43
1.2.3 (L1) Ensure 'Reset account lockout counter after' is set to '15 or more
minute(s)' (Scored) ............................................................................................................................. 45
2 Local Policies ............................................................................................................................................... 47
2.1 Audit Policy.......................................................................................................................................... 47
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2.2 User Rights Assignment .................................................................................................................. 48
2.2.1 (L1) Ensure 'Access Credential Manager as a trusted caller' is set to 'No One'
(Scored) ................................................................................................................................................... 48
2.2.2 (L1) Configure 'Access this computer from the network' (Scored) ...................... 50
2.2.3 (L1) Ensure 'Act as part of the operating system' is set to 'No One' (Scored) .. 52
2.2.4 (L1) Ensure 'Add workstations to domain' is set to 'Administrators' (DC only)
(Scored) ................................................................................................................................................... 53
2.2.5 (L1) Ensure 'Adjust memory quotas for a process' is set to 'Administrators,
LOCAL SERVICE, NETWORK SERVICE' (Scored) ..................................................................... 55
2.2.6 (L1) Configure 'Allow log on locally' (Scored)............................................................... 57
2.2.7 (L1) Configure 'Allow log on through Remote Desktop Services' (Scored) ....... 59
2.2.8 (L1) Ensure 'Back up files and directories' is set to 'Administrators' (Scored) 61
2.2.9 (L1) Ensure 'Change the system time' is set to 'Administrators, LOCAL
SERVICE' (Scored) ............................................................................................................................... 63
2.2.10 (L1) Ensure 'Change the time zone' is set to 'Administrators, LOCAL SERVICE'
(Scored) ................................................................................................................................................... 66
2.2.11 (L1) Ensure 'Create a pagefile' is set to 'Administrators' (Scored) .................... 68
2.2.12 (L1) Ensure 'Create a token object' is set to 'No One' (Scored) ........................... 69
2.2.13 (L1) Ensure 'Create global objects' is set to 'Administrators, LOCAL SERVICE,
NETWORK SERVICE, SERVICE' (Scored) .................................................................................... 71
2.2.14 (L1) Ensure 'Create permanent shared objects' is set to 'No One' (Scored) ... 73
2.2.15 (L1) Configure 'Create symbolic links' (Scored) ........................................................ 74
2.2.16 (L1) Ensure 'Debug programs' is set to 'Administrators' (Scored) .................... 76
2.2.17 (L1) Configure 'Deny access to this computer from the network' (Scored) ... 78
2.2.18 (L1) Ensure 'Deny log on as a batch job' to include 'Guests' (Scored) .............. 80
2.2.19 (L1) Ensure 'Deny log on as a service' to include 'Guests' (Scored)................... 82
2.2.20 (L1) Ensure 'Deny log on locally' to include 'Guests' (Scored)............................. 84
2.2.21 (L1) Ensure 'Deny log on through Remote Desktop Services' to include
'Guests, Local account' (Scored) .................................................................................................... 86
2.2.22 (L1) Configure 'Enable computer and user accounts to be trusted for
delegation' (Scored)............................................................................................................................ 88
2.2.23 (L1) Ensure 'Force shutdown from a remote system' is set to 'Administrators'
(Scored) ................................................................................................................................................... 90
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2.2.24 (L1) Ensure 'Generate security audits' is set to 'LOCAL SERVICE, NETWORK
SERVICE' (Scored) ............................................................................................................................... 92
2.2.25 (L1) Configure 'Impersonate a client after authentication' (Scored) ................ 94
2.2.26 (L1) Ensure 'Increase scheduling priority' is set to 'Administrators' (Scored)
..................................................................................................................................................................... 96
2.2.27 (L1) Ensure 'Load and unload device drivers' is set to 'Administrators'
(Scored) ................................................................................................................................................... 98
2.2.28 (L1) Ensure 'Lock pages in memory' is set to 'No One' (Scored) ...................... 100
2.2.29 (L2) Ensure 'Log on as a batch job' is set to 'Administrators' (DC Only)
(Scored) ................................................................................................................................................. 101
2.2.30 (L1) Configure 'Manage auditing and security log' (Scored) .............................. 103
2.2.31 (L1) Ensure 'Modify an object label' is set to 'No One' (Scored) ....................... 105
2.2.32 (L1) Ensure 'Modify firmware environment values' is set to 'Administrators'
(Scored) ................................................................................................................................................. 106
2.2.33 (L1) Ensure 'Perform volume maintenance tasks' is set to 'Administrators'
(Scored) ................................................................................................................................................. 108
2.2.34 (L1) Ensure 'Profile single process' is set to 'Administrators' (Scored) ......... 110
2.2.35 (L1) Ensure 'Profile system performance' is set to 'Administrators, NT
SERVICE\WdiServiceHost' (Scored) .......................................................................................... 112
2.2.36 (L1) Ensure 'Replace a process level token' is set to 'LOCAL SERVICE,
NETWORK SERVICE' (Scored) ...................................................................................................... 114
2.2.37 (L1) Ensure 'Restore files and directories' is set to 'Administrators' (Scored)
................................................................................................................................................................... 116
2.2.38 (L1) Ensure 'Shut down the system' is set to 'Administrators' (Scored) ....... 118
2.2.39 (L1) Ensure 'Synchronize directory service data' is set to 'No One' (DC only)
(Scored) ................................................................................................................................................. 120
2.2.40 (L1) Ensure 'Take ownership of files or other objects' is set to
'Administrators' (Scored) ............................................................................................................... 122
2.3 Security Options .............................................................................................................................. 124
2.3.1.1 (L1) Ensure 'Accounts: Administrator account status' is set to 'Disabled'
(Scored) ................................................................................................................................................. 124
2.3.1.2 (L1) Ensure 'Accounts: Block Microsoft accounts' is set to 'Users can't add or
log on with Microsoft accounts' (Scored) ................................................................................. 126
2.3.1.3 (L1) Ensure 'Accounts: Guest account status' is set to 'Disabled' (Scored).. 128
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2.3.1.4 (L1) Ensure 'Accounts: Limit local account use of blank passwords to console
logon only' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored) ..................................................................................... 130
2.3.1.5 (L1) Configure 'Accounts: Rename administrator account' (Scored) ............. 132
2.3.1.6 (L1) Configure 'Accounts: Rename guest account' (Scored) .............................. 134
2.3.2.1 (L1) Ensure 'Audit: Force audit policy subcategory settings (Windows Vista
or later) to override audit policy category settings' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored) ..... 135
2.3.2.2 (L1) Ensure 'Audit: Shut down system immediately if unable to log security
audits' is set to 'Disabled' (Scored) ............................................................................................. 137
2.3.4.1 (L1) Ensure 'Devices: Allowed to format and eject removable media' is set to
'Administrators' (Scored) ............................................................................................................... 139
2.3.4.2 (L1) Ensure 'Devices: Prevent users from installing printer drivers' is set to
'Enabled' (Scored) ............................................................................................................................. 141
2.3.5.1 (L1) Ensure 'Domain controller: Allow server operators to schedule tasks' is
set to 'Disabled' (DC only) (Scored) ........................................................................................... 143
2.3.5.2 (L1) Ensure 'Domain controller: LDAP server signing requirements' is set to
'Require signing' (DC only) (Scored) ......................................................................................... 145
2.3.5.3 (L1) Ensure 'Domain controller: Refuse machine account password changes'
is set to 'Disabled' (DC only) (Scored) ....................................................................................... 147
2.3.6.1 (L1) Ensure 'Domain member: Digitally encrypt or sign secure channel data
(always)' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored) ......................................................................................... 149
2.3.6.2 (L1) Ensure 'Domain member: Digitally encrypt secure channel data (when
possible)' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored) ........................................................................................ 152
2.3.6.3 (L1) Ensure 'Domain member: Digitally sign secure channel data (when
possible)' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored) ........................................................................................ 154
2.3.6.4 (L1) Ensure 'Domain member: Disable machine account password changes'
is set to 'Disabled' (Scored) ........................................................................................................... 156
2.3.6.5 (L1) Ensure 'Domain member: Maximum machine account password age' is
set to '30 or fewer days, but not 0' (Scored) ........................................................................... 158
2.3.6.6 (L1) Ensure 'Domain member: Require strong (Windows 2000 or later)
session key' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored) ................................................................................... 160
2.3.7.1 (L1) Ensure 'Interactive logon: Do not display last user name' is set to
'Enabled' (Scored) ............................................................................................................................. 162
2.3.7.2 (L1) Ensure 'Interactive logon: Do not require CTRL+ALT+DEL' is set to
'Disabled' (Scored) ............................................................................................................................ 164
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2.3.7.3 (L1) Ensure 'Interactive logon: Machine inactivity limit' is set to '900 or
fewer second(s), but not 0' (Scored) .......................................................................................... 166
2.3.7.4 (L1) Configure 'Interactive logon: Message text for users attempting to log
on' (Scored) .......................................................................................................................................... 168
2.3.7.5 (L1) Configure 'Interactive logon: Message title for users attempting to log
on' (Scored) .......................................................................................................................................... 170
2.3.7.6 (L2) Ensure 'Interactive logon: Number of previous logons to cache (in case
domain controller is not available)' is set to '4 or fewer logon(s)' (MS only) (Scored)
................................................................................................................................................................... 172
2.3.7.7 (L1) Ensure 'Interactive logon: Prompt user to change password before
expiration' is set to 'between 5 and 14 days' (Scored) ....................................................... 174
2.3.7.8 (L1) Ensure 'Interactive logon: Require Domain Controller Authentication to
unlock workstation' is set to 'Enabled' (MS only) (Scored) .............................................. 176
2.3.7.9 (L1) Ensure 'Interactive logon: Smart card removal behavior' is set to 'Lock
Workstation' or higher (Scored) .................................................................................................. 178
2.3.8.1 (L1) Ensure 'Microsoft network client: Digitally sign communications
(always)' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored) ......................................................................................... 180
2.3.8.2 (L1) Ensure 'Microsoft network client: Digitally sign communications (if
server agrees)' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored) ............................................................................. 183
2.3.8.3 (L1) Ensure 'Microsoft network client: Send unencrypted password to thirdparty SMB servers' is set to 'Disabled' (Scored) .................................................................... 185
2.3.9.1 (L1) Ensure 'Microsoft network server: Amount of idle time required before
suspending session' is set to '15 or fewer minute(s), but not 0' (Scored) .................. 187
2.3.9.2 (L1) Ensure 'Microsoft network server: Digitally sign communications
(always)' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored) ......................................................................................... 189
2.3.9.3 (L1) Ensure 'Microsoft network server: Digitally sign communications (if
client agrees)' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored) ............................................................................... 191
2.3.9.4 (L1) Ensure 'Microsoft network server: Disconnect clients when logon hours
expire' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored).............................................................................................. 193
2.3.9.5 (L1) Ensure 'Microsoft network server: Server SPN target name validation
level' is set to 'Accept if provided by client' or higher (Scored) ...................................... 195
2.3.10.1 (L1) Ensure 'Network access: Allow anonymous SID/Name translation' is
set to 'Disabled' (Scored) ................................................................................................................ 197
2.3.10.2 (L1) Ensure 'Network access: Do not allow anonymous enumeration of SAM
accounts' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored) ........................................................................................ 199
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2.3.10.3 (L1) Ensure 'Network access: Do not allow anonymous enumeration of SAM
accounts and shares' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored) ................................................................. 201
2.3.10.4 (L2) Ensure 'Network access: Do not allow storage of passwords and
credentials for network authentication' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored) ............................ 203
2.3.10.5 (L1) Ensure 'Network access: Let Everyone permissions apply to
anonymous users' is set to 'Disabled' (Scored) ..................................................................... 205
2.3.10.6 (L1) Configure 'Network access: Named Pipes that can be accessed
anonymously' (Scored).................................................................................................................... 207
2.3.10.7 (L1) Ensure 'Network access: Remotely accessible registry paths' (Scored)
................................................................................................................................................................... 209
2.3.10.8 (L1) Ensure 'Network access: Remotely accessible registry paths and subpaths' (Scored) .................................................................................................................................... 211
2.3.10.9 (L1) Ensure 'Network access: Restrict anonymous access to Named Pipes
and Shares' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored) .................................................................................... 214
2.3.10.10 (L1) Ensure 'Network access: Shares that can be accessed anonymously' is
set to 'None' (Scored) ....................................................................................................................... 216
2.3.10.11 (L1) Ensure 'Network access: Sharing and security model for local
accounts' is set to 'Classic - local users authenticate as themselves' (Scored) .......... 218
2.3.11.1 (L1) Ensure 'Network security: Allow Local System to use computer
identity for NTLM' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored) ...................................................................... 220
2.3.11.2 (L1) Ensure 'Network security: Allow LocalSystem NULL session fallback' is
set to 'Disabled' (Scored) ................................................................................................................ 222
2.3.11.3 (L1) Ensure 'Network Security: Allow PKU2U authentication requests to
this computer to use online identities' is set to 'Disabled' (Scored).............................. 224
2.3.11.4 (L1) Ensure 'Network Security: Configure encryption types allowed for
Kerberos' is set to 'RC4_HMAC_MD5, AES128_HMAC_SHA1, AES256_HMAC_SHA1,
Future encryption types' (Scored) .............................................................................................. 226
2.3.11.5 (L1) Ensure 'Network security: Do not store LAN Manager hash value on
next password change' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored) ............................................................. 228
2.3.11.6 (L1) Ensure 'Network security: Force logoff when logon hours expire' is set
to 'Enabled' (Scored) ........................................................................................................................ 230
2.3.11.7 (L1) Ensure 'Network security: LAN Manager authentication level' is set to
'Send NTLMv2 response only. Refuse LM & NTLM' (Scored)........................................... 232
2.3.11.8 (L1) Ensure 'Network security: LDAP client signing requirements' is set to
'Negotiate signing' or higher (Scored)....................................................................................... 236
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2.3.11.9 (L1) Ensure 'Network security: Minimum session security for NTLM SSP
based (including secure RPC) clients' is set to 'Require NTLMv2 session security,
Require 128-bit encryption' (Scored) ....................................................................................... 238
2.3.11.10 (L1) Ensure 'Network security: Minimum session security for NTLM SSP
based (including secure RPC) servers' is set to 'Require NTLMv2 session security,
Require 128-bit encryption' (Scored) ....................................................................................... 240
2.3.13.1 (L1) Ensure 'Shutdown: Allow system to be shut down without having to
log on' is set to 'Disabled' (Scored) ............................................................................................. 242
2.3.15.1 (L1) Ensure 'System objects: Require case insensitivity for non-Windows
subsystems' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored) ................................................................................... 244
2.3.15.2 (L1) Ensure 'System objects: Strengthen default permissions of internal
system objects (e.g. Symbolic Links)' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored) ................................. 246
2.3.17.1 (L1) Ensure 'User Account Control: Admin Approval Mode for the Built-in
Administrator account' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored)............................................................. 248
2.3.17.2 (L1) Ensure 'User Account Control: Allow UIAccess applications to prompt
for elevation without using the secure desktop' is set to 'Disabled' (Scored) ........... 251
2.3.17.3 (L1) Ensure 'User Account Control: Behavior of the elevation prompt for
administrators in Admin Approval Mode' is set to 'Prompt for consent on the secure
desktop' (Scored) ............................................................................................................................... 253
2.3.17.4 (L1) Ensure 'User Account Control: Behavior of the elevation prompt for
standard users' is set to 'Automatically deny elevation requests' (Scored) ............... 255
2.3.17.5 (L1) Ensure 'User Account Control: Detect application installations and
prompt for elevation' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored) ................................................................ 257
2.3.17.6 (L1) Ensure 'User Account Control: Only elevate UIAccess applications that
are installed in secure locations' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored) .......................................... 259
2.3.17.7 (L1) Ensure 'User Account Control: Run all administrators in Admin
Approval Mode' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored) ........................................................................... 261
2.3.17.8 (L1) Ensure 'User Account Control: Switch to the secure desktop when
prompting for elevation' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored) .......................................................... 263
2.3.17.9 (L1) Ensure 'User Account Control: Virtualize file and registry write failures
to per-user locations' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored) ................................................................ 265
3 Event Log .................................................................................................................................................... 266
4 Restricted Groups .................................................................................................................................... 266
5 System Services ........................................................................................................................................ 266
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6 Registry........................................................................................................................................................ 266
7 File System ................................................................................................................................................. 266
8 Wired Network (IEEE 802.3) Policies ............................................................................................. 266
9 Windows Firewall With Advanced Security.................................................................................. 267
9.1 Domain Profile.................................................................................................................................. 267
9.1.1 (L1) Ensure 'Windows Firewall: Domain: Firewall state' is set to 'On
(recommended)' (Scored) .............................................................................................................. 267
9.1.2 (L1) Ensure 'Windows Firewall: Domain: Inbound connections' is set to 'Block
(default)' (Scored) ............................................................................................................................. 269
9.1.3 (L1) Ensure 'Windows Firewall: Domain: Outbound connections' is set to
'Allow (default)' (Scored) ............................................................................................................... 271
9.1.4 (L1) Ensure 'Windows Firewall: Domain: Settings: Display a notification' is set
to 'No' (Scored) ................................................................................................................................... 273
9.1.5 (L1) Ensure 'Windows Firewall: Domain: Settings: Apply local firewall rules' is
set to 'Yes (default)' (Scored)........................................................................................................ 275
9.1.6 (L1) Ensure 'Windows Firewall: Domain: Settings: Apply local connection
security rules' is set to 'Yes (default)' (Scored) ..................................................................... 277
9.1.7 (L1) Ensure 'Windows Firewall: Domain: Logging: Name' is set to
'%SYSTEMROOT%\System32\logfiles\firewall\domainfw.log' (Scored) ................. 279
9.1.8 (L1) Ensure 'Windows Firewall: Domain: Logging: Size limit (KB)' is set to
'16,384 KB or greater' (Scored) ................................................................................................... 281
9.1.9 (L1) Ensure 'Windows Firewall: Domain: Logging: Log dropped packets' is set
to 'Yes' (Scored).................................................................................................................................. 283
9.1.10 (L1) Ensure 'Windows Firewall: Domain: Logging: Log successful
connections' is set to 'Yes' (Scored) ........................................................................................... 285
9.2 Private Profile ................................................................................................................................... 287
9.2.1 (L1) Ensure 'Windows Firewall: Private: Firewall state' is set to 'On
(recommended)' (Scored) .............................................................................................................. 287
9.2.2 (L1) Ensure 'Windows Firewall: Private: Inbound connections' is set to 'Block
(default)' (Scored) ............................................................................................................................. 289
9.2.3 (L1) Ensure 'Windows Firewall: Private: Outbound connections' is set to 'Allow
(default)' (Scored) ............................................................................................................................. 291
9.2.4 (L1) Ensure 'Windows Firewall: Private: Settings: Display a notification' is set
to 'No' (Scored) ................................................................................................................................... 293
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9.2.5 (L1) Ensure 'Windows Firewall: Private: Settings: Apply local firewall rules' is
set to 'Yes (default)' (Scored)........................................................................................................ 295
9.2.6 (L1) Ensure 'Windows Firewall: Private: Settings: Apply local connection
security rules' is set to 'Yes (default)' (Scored) ..................................................................... 297
9.2.7 (L1) Ensure 'Windows Firewall: Private: Logging: Name' is set to
'%SYSTEMROOT%\System32\logfiles\firewall\privatefw.log' (Scored) .................. 299
9.2.8 (L1) Ensure 'Windows Firewall: Private: Logging: Size limit (KB)' is set to
'16,384 KB or greater' (Scored) ................................................................................................... 301
9.2.9 (L1) Ensure 'Windows Firewall: Private: Logging: Log dropped packets' is set
to 'Yes' (Scored).................................................................................................................................. 303
9.2.10 (L1) Ensure 'Windows Firewall: Private: Logging: Log successful connections'
is set to 'Yes' (Scored) ...................................................................................................................... 305
9.3 Public Profile ..................................................................................................................................... 307
9.3.1 (L1) Ensure 'Windows Firewall: Public: Firewall state' is set to 'On
(recommended)' (Scored) .............................................................................................................. 307
9.3.2 (L1) Ensure 'Windows Firewall: Public: Inbound connections' is set to 'Block
(default)' (Scored) ............................................................................................................................. 309
9.3.3 (L1) Ensure 'Windows Firewall: Public: Outbound connections' is set to 'Allow
(default)' (Scored) ............................................................................................................................. 311
9.3.4 (L1) Ensure 'Windows Firewall: Public: Settings: Display a notification' is set to
'Yes' (Scored) ....................................................................................................................................... 313
9.3.5 (L1) Ensure 'Windows Firewall: Public: Settings: Apply local firewall rules' is
set to 'No' (Scored) ............................................................................................................................ 315
9.3.6 (L1) Ensure 'Windows Firewall: Public: Settings: Apply local connection
security rules' is set to 'No' (Scored) ......................................................................................... 317
9.3.7 (L1) Ensure 'Windows Firewall: Public: Logging: Name' is set to
'%SYSTEMROOT%\System32\logfiles\firewall\publicfw.log' (Scored) .................... 319
9.3.8 (L1) Ensure 'Windows Firewall: Public: Logging: Size limit (KB)' is set to
'16,384 KB or greater' (Scored) ................................................................................................... 321
9.3.9 (L1) Ensure 'Windows Firewall: Public: Logging: Log dropped packets' is set to
'Yes' (Scored) ....................................................................................................................................... 323
9.3.10 (L1) Ensure 'Windows Firewall: Public: Logging: Log successful connections'
is set to 'Yes' (Scored) ...................................................................................................................... 325
10 Network List Manager Policies ........................................................................................................ 327
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11 Wireless Network (IEEE 802.11) Policies ................................................................................... 327
12 Public Key Policies ................................................................................................................................ 327
13 Software Restriction Policies ........................................................................................................... 327
14 Network Access Protection NAP Client Configuration ........................................................... 327
15 Application Control Policies ............................................................................................................. 327
16 IP Security Policies ............................................................................................................................... 327
17 Advanced Audit Policy Configuration ........................................................................................... 328
17.1 Account Logon ............................................................................................................................... 328
17.1.1 (L1) Ensure 'Audit Credential Validation' is set to 'Success and Failure'
(Scored) ................................................................................................................................................. 328
17.2 Account Management ................................................................................................................. 330
17.2.1 (L1) Ensure 'Audit Application Group Management' is set to 'Success and
Failure' (Scored)................................................................................................................................. 330
17.2.2 (L1) Ensure 'Audit Computer Account Management' is set to 'Success and
Failure' (Scored)................................................................................................................................. 332
17.2.3 (L1) Ensure 'Audit Distribution Group Management' is set to 'Success and
Failure' (DC only) (Scored) ............................................................................................................ 334
17.2.4 (L1) Ensure 'Audit Other Account Management Events' is set to 'Success and
Failure' (Scored)................................................................................................................................. 336
17.2.5 (L1) Ensure 'Audit Security Group Management' is set to 'Success and Failure'
(Scored) ................................................................................................................................................. 338
17.2.6 (L1) Ensure 'Audit User Account Management' is set to 'Success and Failure'
(Scored) ................................................................................................................................................. 340
17.3 Detailed Tracking ......................................................................................................................... 342
17.3.1 (L1) Ensure 'Audit Process Creation' is set to 'Success' (Scored) ..................... 342
17.4 DS Access ......................................................................................................................................... 344
17.4.1 (L1) Ensure 'Audit Directory Service Access' is set to 'Success and Failure'
(DC only) (Scored) ............................................................................................................................. 344
17.4.2 (L1) Ensure 'Audit Directory Service Changes' is set to 'Success and Failure'
(DC only) (Scored) ............................................................................................................................. 346
17.5 Logon/Logoff .................................................................................................................................. 348
17.5.1 (L1) Ensure 'Audit Account Lockout' is set to 'Success' (Scored) ..................... 348
17.5.2 (L1) Ensure 'Audit Logoff' is set to 'Success' (Scored) .......................................... 350
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17.5.3 (L1) Ensure 'Audit Logon' is set to 'Success and Failure' (Scored) .................. 352
17.5.4 (L1) Ensure 'Audit Other Logon/Logoff Events' is set to 'Success and Failure'
(Scored) ................................................................................................................................................. 354
17.5.5 (L1) Ensure 'Audit Special Logon' is set to 'Success' (Scored) ........................... 356
17.6 Object Access .................................................................................................................................. 358
17.6.1 (L1) Ensure 'Audit Removable Storage' is set to 'Success and Failure' (Scored)
................................................................................................................................................................... 358
17.7 Policy Change ................................................................................................................................. 360
17.7.1 (L1) Ensure 'Audit Audit Policy Change' is set to 'Success and Failure'
(Scored) ................................................................................................................................................. 360
17.7.2 (L1) Ensure 'Audit Authentication Policy Change' is set to 'Success' (Scored)
................................................................................................................................................................... 362
17.8 Privilege Use ................................................................................................................................... 364
17.8.1 (L1) Ensure 'Audit Sensitive Privilege Use' is set to 'Success and Failure'
(Scored) ................................................................................................................................................. 364
17.9 System ............................................................................................................................................... 366
17.9.1 (L1) Ensure 'Audit IPsec Driver' is set to 'Success and Failure' (Scored) ...... 366
17.9.2 (L1) Ensure 'Audit Other System Events' is set to 'Success and Failure'
(Scored) ................................................................................................................................................. 369
17.9.3 (L1) Ensure 'Audit Security State Change' is set to 'Success' (Scored) ........... 371
17.9.4 (L1) Ensure 'Audit Security System Extension' is set to 'Success and Failure'
(Scored) ................................................................................................................................................. 373
17.9.5 (L1) Ensure 'Audit System Integrity' is set to 'Success and Failure' (Scored)
................................................................................................................................................................... 375
18 Administrative Templates (Computer) ........................................................................................ 377
18.1 Control Panel .................................................................................................................................. 377
18.1.1.1 (L1) Ensure 'Prevent enabling lock screen camera' is set to 'Enabled'
(Scored) ................................................................................................................................................. 377
18.1.1.2 (L1) Ensure 'Prevent enabling lock screen slide show' is set to 'Enabled'
(Scored) ................................................................................................................................................. 379
18.2 LAPS ................................................................................................................................................... 381
18.2.1 (L1) Ensure LAPS AdmPwd GPO Extension / CSE is installed (MS only)
(Scored) ................................................................................................................................................. 381
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18.2.2 (L1) Ensure 'Do not allow password expiration time longer than required by
policy' is set to 'Enabled' (MS only) (Scored) ......................................................................... 383
18.2.3 (L1) Ensure 'Enable Local Admin Password Management' is set to 'Enabled'
(MS only) (Scored) ............................................................................................................................ 385
18.2.4 (L1) Ensure 'Password Settings: Password Complexity' is set to 'Enabled:
Large letters + small letters + numbers + special characters' (MS only) (Scored) .. 387
18.2.5 (L1) Ensure 'Password Settings: Password Length' is set to 'Enabled: 15 or
more' (MS only) (Scored) ............................................................................................................... 389
18.2.6 (L1) Ensure 'Password Settings: Password Age (Days)' is set to 'Enabled: 30
or fewer' (MS only) (Scored) ......................................................................................................... 391
18.3 MSS (Legacy) .................................................................................................................................. 393
18.3.1 (L1) Ensure 'MSS: (AutoAdminLogon) Enable Automatic Logon (not
recommended)' is set to 'Disabled' (Scored) .......................................................................... 393
18.3.2 (L1) Ensure 'MSS: (DisableIPSourceRouting IPv6) IP source routing
protection level (protects against packet spoofing)' is set to 'Enabled: Highest
protection, source routing is completely disabled' (Scored) ............................................ 395
18.3.3 (L1) Ensure 'MSS: (DisableIPSourceRouting) IP source routing protection
level (protects against packet spoofing)' is set to 'Enabled: Highest protection,
source routing is completely disabled' (Scored) ................................................................... 397
18.3.4 (L1) Ensure 'MSS: (EnableICMPRedirect) Allow ICMP redirects to override
OSPF generated routes' is set to 'Disabled' (Scored) ........................................................... 399
18.3.5 (L2) Ensure 'MSS: (KeepAliveTime) How often keep-alive packets are sent in
milliseconds' is set to 'Enabled: 300,000 or 5 minutes (recommended)' (Scored) . 401
18.3.6 (L1) Ensure 'MSS: (NoNameReleaseOnDemand) Allow the computer to ignore
NetBIOS name release requests except from WINS servers' is set to 'Enabled'
(Scored) ................................................................................................................................................. 403
18.3.7 (L2) Ensure 'MSS: (PerformRouterDiscovery) Allow IRDP to detect and
configure Default Gateway addresses (could lead to DoS)' is set to 'Disabled'
(Scored) ................................................................................................................................................. 405
18.3.8 (L1) Ensure 'MSS: (SafeDllSearchMode) Enable Safe DLL search mode
(recommended)' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored) ......................................................................... 407
18.3.9 (L1) Ensure 'MSS: (ScreenSaverGracePeriod) The time in seconds before the
screen saver grace period expires (0 recommended)' is set to 'Enabled: 5 or fewer
seconds' (Scored)............................................................................................................................... 409
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18.3.10 (L2) Ensure 'MSS: (TcpMaxDataRetransmissions IPv6) How many times
unacknowledged data is retransmitted' is set to 'Enabled: 3' (Scored) ....................... 411
18.3.11 (L2) Ensure 'MSS: (TcpMaxDataRetransmissions) How many times
unacknowledged data is retransmitted' is set to 'Enabled: 3' (Scored) ....................... 413
18.3.12 (L1) Ensure 'MSS: (WarningLevel) Percentage threshold for the security
event log at which the system will generate a warning' is set to 'Enabled: 90% or
less' (Scored) ....................................................................................................................................... 415
18.4 Network............................................................................................................................................ 417
18.4.8.1 (L2) Ensure 'Turn on Mapper I/O (LLTDIO) driver' is set to 'Disabled'
(Scored) ................................................................................................................................................. 418
18.4.8.2 (L2) Ensure 'Turn on Responder (RSPNDR) driver' is set to 'Disabled'
(Scored) ................................................................................................................................................. 420
18.4.9.2 (L2) Ensure 'Turn off Microsoft Peer-to-Peer Networking Services' is set to
'Enabled' (Scored) ............................................................................................................................. 422
18.4.10.2 (L1) Ensure 'Prohibit installation and configuration of Network Bridge on
your DNS domain network' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored) .................................................... 424
18.4.10.3 (L1) Ensure 'Require domain users to elevate when setting a network's
location' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored) .......................................................................................... 426
18.4.13.1 (L1) Ensure 'Hardened UNC Paths' is set to 'Enabled, with "Require Mutual
Authentication" and "Require Integrity" set for all NETLOGON and SYSVOL shares'
(Scored) ................................................................................................................................................. 428
18.4.18.2.1 (L2) Disable IPv6 (Ensure TCPIP6 Parameter 'DisabledComponents' is
set to '0xff (255)') (Scored) ........................................................................................................... 431
18.4.19.1 (L2) Ensure 'Configuration of wireless settings using Windows Connect
Now' is set to 'Disabled' (Scored) ................................................................................................ 433
18.4.19.2 (L2) Ensure 'Prohibit access of the Windows Connect Now wizards' is set
to 'Enabled' (Scored) ........................................................................................................................ 435
18.4.20.1 (L1) Ensure 'Minimize the number of simultaneous connections to the
Internet or a Windows Domain' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored) ........................................... 437
18.4.20.2 (L2) Ensure 'Prohibit connection to non-domain networks when
connected to domain authenticated network' is set to 'Enabled' (MS only) (Scored)
................................................................................................................................................................... 439
18.5 Printers ............................................................................................................................................. 440
18.6 SCM: Pass the Hash Mitigations .............................................................................................. 441
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18.6.1 (L1) Ensure 'Apply UAC restrictions to local accounts on network logons' is
set to 'Enabled' (MS only) (Scored) ............................................................................................ 441
18.6.2 (L1) Ensure 'WDigest Authentication' is set to 'Disabled' (Scored) ................. 443
18.7 Start Menu and Taskbar ............................................................................................................. 444
18.8 System ............................................................................................................................................... 445
18.8.2.1 (L1) Ensure 'Include command line in process creation events' is set to
'Disabled' (Scored) ............................................................................................................................ 445
18.8.11.1 (L1) Ensure 'Boot-Start Driver Initialization Policy' is set to 'Enabled:
Good, unknown and bad but critical' (Scored) ....................................................................... 448
18.8.18.2 (L1) Ensure 'Configure registry policy processing: Do not apply during
periodic background processing' is set to 'Enabled: FALSE' (Scored) .......................... 451
18.8.18.3 (L1) Ensure 'Configure registry policy processing: Process even if the
Group Policy objects have not changed' is set to 'Enabled: TRUE' (Scored) .............. 453
18.8.18.4 (L1) Ensure 'Turn off background refresh of Group Policy' is set to
'Disabled' (Scored) ............................................................................................................................ 455
18.8.19.1.1 (L2) Ensure 'Turn off access to the Store' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored) . 457
18.8.19.1.2 (L2) Ensure 'Turn off downloading of print drivers over HTTP' is set to
'Enabled' (Scored) ............................................................................................................................. 459
18.8.19.1.3 (L2) Ensure 'Turn off handwriting personalization data sharing' is set to
'Enabled' (Scored) ............................................................................................................................. 461
18.8.19.1.4 (L2) Ensure 'Turn off handwriting recognition error reporting' is set to
'Enabled' (Scored) ............................................................................................................................. 463
18.8.19.1.5 (L2) Ensure 'Turn off Internet Connection Wizard if URL connection is
referring to Microsoft.com' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored) ..................................................... 465
18.8.19.1.6 (L2) Ensure 'Turn off Internet download for Web publishing and online
ordering wizards' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored) ....................................................................... 467
18.8.19.1.7 (L2) Ensure 'Turn off printing over HTTP' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored) 469
18.8.19.1.8 (L2) Ensure 'Turn off Registration if URL connection is referring to
Microsoft.com' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored) ............................................................................. 471
18.8.19.1.9 (L2) Ensure 'Turn off Search Companion content file updates' is set to
'Enabled' (Scored) ............................................................................................................................. 473
18.8.19.1.10 (L2) Ensure 'Turn off the "Order Prints" picture task' is set to 'Enabled'
(Scored) ................................................................................................................................................. 475
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18.8.19.1.11 (L2) Ensure 'Turn off the "Publish to Web" task for files and folders' is
set to 'Enabled' (Scored) ................................................................................................................. 477
18.8.19.1.12 (L2) Ensure 'Turn off the Windows Messenger Customer Experience
Improvement Program' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored) ............................................................ 479
18.8.19.1.13 (L2) Ensure 'Turn off Windows Customer Experience Improvement
Program' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored)......................................................................................... 481
18.8.19.1.14 (L2) Ensure 'Turn off Windows Error Reporting' is set to 'Enabled'
(Scored) ................................................................................................................................................. 483
18.8.23.1 (L2) Ensure 'Disallow copying of user input methods to the system
account for sign-in' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored) .................................................................... 485
18.8.24.1 (L1) Ensure 'Do not display network selection UI' is set to 'Enabled'
(Scored) ................................................................................................................................................. 487
18.8.24.2 (L1) Ensure 'Do not enumerate connected users on domain-joined
computers' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored)..................................................................................... 489
18.8.24.3 (L1) Ensure 'Enumerate local users on domain-joined computers' is set to
'Disabled' (Scored) ............................................................................................................................ 491
18.8.24.4 (L1) Ensure 'Turn off app notifications on the lock screen' is set to
'Enabled' (Scored) ............................................................................................................................. 493
18.8.24.5 (L1) Ensure 'Turn on convenience PIN sign-in' is set to 'Disabled' (Scored)
................................................................................................................................................................... 495
18.8.28.4.1 (L2) Ensure 'Require a password when a computer wakes (on battery)'
is set to 'Enabled' (Scored)............................................................................................................. 497
18.8.28.4.2 (L2) Ensure 'Require a password when a computer wakes (plugged in)'
is set to 'Enabled' (Scored)............................................................................................................. 499
18.8.30.1 (L1) Ensure 'Configure Offer Remote Assistance' is set to 'Disabled'
(Scored) ................................................................................................................................................. 501
18.8.30.2 (L1) Ensure 'Configure Solicited Remote Assistance' is set to 'Disabled'
(Scored) ................................................................................................................................................. 504
18.8.31.1 (L1) Ensure 'Enable RPC Endpoint Mapper Client Authentication' is set to
'Enabled' (MS only) (Scored) ........................................................................................................ 506
18.8.31.2 (L2) Ensure 'Restrict Unauthenticated RPC clients' is set to 'Enabled:
Authenticated' (MS only) (Scored) ............................................................................................. 508
18.8.38.5.1 (L2) Ensure 'Microsoft Support Diagnostic Tool: Turn on MSDT
interactive communication with support provider' is set to 'Disabled' (Scored) .... 512
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18.8.38.11.1 (L2) Ensure 'Enable/Disable PerfTrack' is set to 'Disabled' (Scored) 514
18.8.43.1.1 (L2) Ensure 'Enable Windows NTP Client' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored) 516
18.8.43.1.2 (L2) Ensure 'Enable Windows NTP Server' is set to 'Disabled' (MS only)
(Scored) ................................................................................................................................................. 518
18.9 Windows Components................................................................................................................ 519
18.9.6.1 (L1) Ensure 'Allow Microsoft accounts to be optional' is set to 'Enabled'
(Scored) ................................................................................................................................................. 520
18.9.8.1 (L1) Ensure 'Disallow Autoplay for non-volume devices' is set to 'Enabled'
(Scored) ................................................................................................................................................. 522
18.9.8.2 (L1) Ensure 'Set the default behavior for AutoRun' is set to 'Enabled: Do not
execute any autorun commands' (Scored) .............................................................................. 524
18.9.8.3 (L1) Ensure 'Turn off Autoplay' is set to 'Enabled: All drives' (Scored) ..... 526
18.9.13.1 (L1) Ensure 'Do not display the password reveal button' is set to 'Enabled'
(Scored) ................................................................................................................................................. 528
18.9.13.2 (L1) Ensure 'Enumerate administrator accounts on elevation' is set to
'Disabled' (Scored) ............................................................................................................................ 530
18.9.22.1 (L1) Ensure 'EMET 5.5' or higher is installed (Scored) .................................. 533
18.9.22.2 (L1) Ensure 'Default Action and Mitigation Settings' is set to 'Enabled'
(plus subsettings) (Scored)............................................................................................................ 534
18.9.22.3 (L1) Ensure 'Default Protections for Internet Explorer' is set to 'Enabled'
(Scored) ................................................................................................................................................. 536
18.9.22.4 (L1) Ensure 'Default Protections for Popular Software' is set to 'Enabled'
(Scored) ................................................................................................................................................. 537
18.9.22.5 (L1) Ensure 'Default Protections for Recommended Software' is set to
'Enabled' (Scored) ............................................................................................................................. 538
18.9.22.6 (L1) Ensure 'System ASLR' is set to 'Enabled: Application Opt-In' (Scored)
................................................................................................................................................................... 539
18.9.22.7 (L1) Ensure 'System DEP' is set to 'Enabled: Application Opt-Out' (Scored)
................................................................................................................................................................... 540
18.9.22.8 (L1) Ensure 'System SEHOP' is set to 'Enabled: Application Opt-Out'
(Scored) ................................................................................................................................................. 541
18.9.24.1.1 (L1) Ensure 'Application: Control Event Log behavior when the log file
reaches its maximum size' is set to 'Disabled' (Scored) ..................................................... 543
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18.9.24.1.2 (L1) Ensure 'Application: Specify the maximum log file size (KB)' is set to
'Enabled: 32,768 or greater' (Scored) ....................................................................................... 545
18.9.24.2.1 (L1) Ensure 'Security: Control Event Log behavior when the log file
reaches its maximum size' is set to 'Disabled' (Scored) ..................................................... 547
18.9.24.2.2 (L1) Ensure 'Security: Specify the maximum log file size (KB)' is set to
'Enabled: 196,608 or greater' (Scored) ..................................................................................... 549
18.9.24.3.1 (L1) Ensure 'Setup: Control Event Log behavior when the log file reaches
its maximum size' is set to 'Disabled' (Scored) ...................................................................... 551
18.9.24.3.2 (L1) Ensure 'Setup: Specify the maximum log file size (KB)' is set to
'Enabled: 32,768 or greater' (Scored) ....................................................................................... 553
18.9.24.4.1 (L1) Ensure 'System: Control Event Log behavior when the log file
reaches its maximum size' is set to 'Disabled' (Scored) ..................................................... 555
18.9.24.4.2 (L1) Ensure 'System: Specify the maximum log file size (KB)' is set to
'Enabled: 32,768 or greater' (Scored) ....................................................................................... 557
18.9.28.2 (L1) Ensure 'Configure Windows SmartScreen' is set to 'Enabled: Require
approval from an administrator before running downloaded unknown software'
(Scored) ................................................................................................................................................. 560
18.9.28.3 (L1) Ensure 'Turn off Data Execution Prevention for Explorer' is set to
'Disabled' (Scored) ............................................................................................................................ 562
18.9.28.4 (L1) Ensure 'Turn off heap termination on corruption' is set to 'Disabled'
(Scored) ................................................................................................................................................. 564
18.9.28.5 (L1) Ensure 'Turn off shell protocol protected mode' is set to 'Disabled'
(Scored) ................................................................................................................................................. 566
18.9.35.1 (L2) Ensure 'Turn off location' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored) .......................... 569
18.9.48.2.2 (L1) Ensure 'Do not allow passwords to be saved' is set to 'Enabled'
(Scored) ................................................................................................................................................. 573
18.9.48.3.2.1 (L2) Ensure 'Restrict Remote Desktop Services users to a single
Remote Desktop Services session' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored) ....................................... 575
18.9.48.3.3.1 (L2) Ensure 'Do not allow COM port redirection' is set to 'Enabled'
(Scored) ................................................................................................................................................. 577
18.9.48.3.3.2 (L1) Ensure 'Do not allow drive redirection' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored)
................................................................................................................................................................... 579
18.9.48.3.3.3 (L2) Ensure 'Do not allow LPT port redirection' is set to 'Enabled'
(Scored) ................................................................................................................................................. 581
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18.9.48.3.3.4 (L2) Ensure 'Do not allow supported Plug and Play device redirection'
is set to 'Enabled' (Scored)............................................................................................................. 583
18.9.48.3.9.1 (L1) Ensure 'Always prompt for password upon connection' is set to
'Enabled' (Scored) ............................................................................................................................. 585
18.9.48.3.9.2 (L1) Ensure 'Require secure RPC communication' is set to 'Enabled'
(Scored) ................................................................................................................................................. 587
18.9.48.3.9.3 (L1) Ensure 'Set client connection encryption level' is set to 'Enabled:
High Level' (Scored) ......................................................................................................................... 589
18.9.48.3.10.1 (L2) Ensure 'Set time limit for active but idle Remote Desktop
Services sessions' is set to 'Enabled: 15 minutes or less' (Scored) ................................ 591
18.9.48.3.10.2 (L2) Ensure 'Set time limit for disconnected sessions' is set to
'Enabled: 1 minute' (Scored) ......................................................................................................... 593
18.9.48.3.11.1 (L1) Ensure 'Do not delete temp folders upon exit' is set to 'Disabled'
(Scored) ................................................................................................................................................. 595
18.9.48.3.11.2 (L1) Ensure 'Do not use temporary folders per session' is set to
'Disabled' (Scored) ............................................................................................................................ 597
18.9.49.1 (L1) Ensure 'Prevent downloading of enclosures' is set to 'Enabled'
(Scored) ................................................................................................................................................. 599
18.9.50.2 (L1) Ensure 'Allow indexing of encrypted files' is set to 'Disabled' (Scored)
................................................................................................................................................................... 601
18.9.50.3 (L2) Ensure 'Set what information is shared in Search' is set to 'Enabled:
Anonymous info' (Scored).............................................................................................................. 603
18.9.54.1 (L1) Ensure 'Prevent the usage of SkyDrive for file storage' is set to
'Enabled' (Scored) ............................................................................................................................. 605
18.9.56.1 (L2) Ensure 'Turn off KMS Client Online AVS Validation' is set to 'Enabled'
(Scored) ................................................................................................................................................. 607
18.9.58.1 (L1) Ensure 'Turn off Automatic Download and Install of updates' is set to
'Disabled' (Scored) ............................................................................................................................ 609
18.9.58.2 (L1) Ensure 'Turn off the offer to update to the latest version of Windows'
is set to 'Enabled' (Scored)............................................................................................................. 611
18.9.58.3 (L2) Ensure 'Turn off the Store application' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored) 613
18.9.66.3.1 (L2) Ensure 'Join Microsoft MAPS' is set to 'Disabled' (Scored) .............. 615
18.9.67.2.1 (L1) Ensure 'Configure Default consent' is set to 'Enabled: Always ask
before sending data' (Scored) ....................................................................................................... 617
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18.9.67.3 (L1) Ensure 'Automatically send memory dumps for OS-generated error
reports' is set to 'Disabled' (Scored) .......................................................................................... 619
18.9.69.1 (L1) Ensure 'Allow user control over installs' is set to 'Disabled' (Scored)
................................................................................................................................................................... 621
18.9.69.2 (L1) Ensure 'Always install with elevated privileges' is set to 'Disabled'
(Scored) ................................................................................................................................................. 623
18.9.69.3 (L2) Ensure 'Prevent Internet Explorer security prompt for Windows
Installer scripts' is set to 'Disabled' (Scored) ......................................................................... 625
18.9.70.1 (L1) Ensure 'Sign-in last interactive user automatically after a systeminitiated restart' is set to 'Disabled' (Scored) ......................................................................... 627
18.9.79.1 (L1) Ensure 'Turn on PowerShell Script Block Logging' is set to 'Disabled'
(Scored) ................................................................................................................................................. 630
18.9.79.2 (L1) Ensure 'Turn on PowerShell Transcription' is set to 'Disabled'
(Scored) ................................................................................................................................................. 632
18.9.81.1.1 (L1) Ensure 'Allow Basic authentication' is set to 'Disabled' (Scored) . 634
18.9.81.1.2 (L1) Ensure 'Allow unencrypted traffic' is set to 'Disabled' (Scored) ... 636
18.9.81.1.3 (L1) Ensure 'Disallow Digest authentication' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored)
................................................................................................................................................................... 638
18.9.81.2.1 (L1) Ensure 'Allow Basic authentication' is set to 'Disabled' (Scored) . 640
18.9.81.2.2 (L1) Ensure 'Allow unencrypted traffic' is set to 'Disabled' (Scored) ... 642
18.9.81.2.3 (L1) Ensure 'Disallow WinRM from storing RunAs credentials' is set to
'Enabled' (Scored) ............................................................................................................................. 644
18.9.82.1 (L2) Ensure 'Allow Remote Shell Access' is set to 'Disabled' (Scored) ..... 646
18.9.85.1 (L1) Ensure 'Configure Automatic Updates' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored) 648
18.9.85.2 (L1) Ensure 'Configure Automatic Updates: Scheduled install day' is set to
'0 - Every day' (Scored) ................................................................................................................... 650
18.9.85.3 (L1) Ensure 'No auto-restart with logged on users for scheduled automatic
updates installations' is set to 'Disabled' (Scored) ............................................................... 652
19 Administrative Templates (User) ................................................................................................... 654
19.1 Control Panel .................................................................................................................................. 654
19.1.3.1 (L1) Ensure 'Enable screen saver' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored) ...................... 655
19.1.3.2 (L1) Ensure 'Force specific screen saver: Screen saver executable name' is
set to 'Enabled: scrnsave.scr' (Scored) ...................................................................................... 657
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19.1.3.3 (L1) Ensure 'Password protect the screen saver' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored)
................................................................................................................................................................... 659
19.1.3.4 (L1) Ensure 'Screen saver timeout' is set to 'Enabled: 900 seconds or fewer,
but not 0' (Scored)............................................................................................................................. 661
19.2 Desktop ............................................................................................................................................. 662
19.3 Network............................................................................................................................................ 662
19.4 Shared Folders ............................................................................................................................... 662
19.5 Start Menu and Taskbar ............................................................................................................. 663
19.5.1.1 (L1) Ensure 'Turn off toast notifications on the lock screen' is set to
'Enabled' (Scored) ............................................................................................................................. 663
19.6 System ............................................................................................................................................... 665
19.6.5.1.1 (L2) Ensure 'Turn off Help Experience Improvement Program' is set to
'Enabled' (Scored) ............................................................................................................................. 666
19.7 Windows Components................................................................................................................ 668
19.7.4.1 (L1) Ensure 'Do not preserve zone information in file attachments' is set to
'Disabled' (Scored) ............................................................................................................................ 669
19.7.4.2 (L1) Ensure 'Notify antivirus programs when opening attachments' is set to
'Enabled' (Scored) ............................................................................................................................. 671
19.7.25.1 (L1) Ensure 'Prevent users from sharing files within their profile.' is set to
'Enabled' (Scored) ............................................................................................................................. 676
19.7.37.1 (L1) Ensure 'Always install with elevated privileges' is set to 'Disabled'
(Scored) ................................................................................................................................................. 679
19.7.41.2.1 (L2) Ensure 'Prevent Codec Download' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored) ..... 682
Appendix: Change History ............................................................................................................................ 710
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Overview
This document provides prescriptive guidance for establishing a secure configuration
posture for CIS Microsoft Windows Server 2012 R2. To obtain the latest version of this
guide, please visit http://benchmarks.cisecurity.org. If you have questions, comments, or
have identified ways to improve this guide, please write us at feedback@cisecurity.org.
Intended Audience
This document is intended for system and application administrators, security specialists,
auditors, help desk, and platform deployment personnel who plan to develop, deploy,
assess, or secure solutions that incorporate Microsoft Windows Server 2012 R2.
Consensus Guidance
This benchmark was created using a consensus review process comprised of subject
matter experts. Consensus participants provide perspective from a diverse set of
backgrounds including consulting, software development, audit and compliance, security
research, operations, government, and legal.
Each CIS benchmark undergoes two phases of consensus review. The first phase occurs
during initial benchmark development. During this phase, subject matter experts convene
to discuss, create, and test working drafts of the benchmark. This discussion occurs until
consensus has been reached on benchmark recommendations. The second phase begins
after the benchmark has been published. During this phase, all feedback provided by the
Internet community is reviewed by the consensus team for incorporation in the
benchmark. If you are interested in participating in the consensus process, please visit
https://community.cisecurity.org.
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Typographical Conventions
The following typographical conventions are used throughout this guide:
Convention
Meaning
Stylized Monospace font
Used for blocks of code, command, and script examples.
Text should be interpreted exactly as presented.
Monospace font
Used for inline code, commands, or examples. Text should
be interpreted exactly as presented.
<italic font in brackets>
Italic texts set in angle brackets denote a variable
requiring substitution for a real value.
Italic font
Used to denote the title of a book, article, or other
publication.
Note
Additional information or caveats
Scoring Information
A scoring status indicates whether compliance with the given recommendation impacts the
assessed target's benchmark score. The following scoring statuses are used in this
benchmark:
Scored
Failure to comply with "Scored" recommendations will decrease the final benchmark score.
Compliance with "Scored" recommendations will increase the final benchmark score.
Not Scored
Failure to comply with "Not Scored" recommendations will not decrease the final
benchmark score. Compliance with "Not Scored" recommendations will not increase the
final benchmark score.
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Profile Definitions
The following configuration profiles are defined by this Benchmark:

Level 1 - Domain Controller
Items in this profile apply to Domain Controllers and intend to:
o
o
o

be practical and prudent;
provide a clear security benefit; and
not inhibit the utility of the technology beyond acceptable means.
Level 1 - Member Server
Items in this profile apply to Member Servers and intend to:
o
o
o
be practical and prudent;
provide a clear security benefit; and
not inhibit the utility of the technology beyond acceptable means.
Items in this profile also apply to Member Servers that have the following Roles
enabled:
o
o
o
o
o
o
o
o
o
o

AD Certificate Services
DHCP Server
DNS Server
File Server
Hyper-V
Network Policy and Access Services
Print Server
Remote Access Services
Remote Desktop Services
Web Server
Level 2 - Domain Controller
This profile extends the "Level 1 - Domain Controller" profile. Items in this profile
exhibit one or more of the following characteristics:
o
o
o
are intended for environments or use cases where security is paramount
acts as defense in depth measure
may negatively inhibit the utility or performance of the technology
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
Level 2 - Member Server
This profile extends the "Level 1 - Member Server" profile. Items in this profile
exhibit one or more of the following characteristics:
o
o
o
are intended for environments or use cases where security is paramount
acts as defense in depth measure
may negatively inhibit the utility or performance of the technology
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Acknowledgements
This benchmark exemplifies the great things a community of users, vendors, and subject matter
experts can accomplish through consensus collaboration. The CIS community thanks the entire
consensus team with special recognition to the following individuals who contributed greatly to
the creation of this guide:
Contributor
Jordan Rakoske
Jason Braun
Editor
Haemish Edgerton MCSE:Security, MCITP:EA
Hardeep Mehrotara CISSP, CISA, GSEC, ISMSA
Kevin Zhang CISSP, CISA, CRISC, CSSLP
The Center for Internet Security extends special recognition and thanks to Microsoft's
Aaron Margosis and Rick Munck, as well as Mike Harris from General Dynamics
Information Technology for their collaboration developing the configuration
recommendations contained in this document.
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Recommendations
1 Account Policies
This section contains recommendations for account policies.
1.1 Password Policy
This section contains recommendations for password policy.
1.1.1 (L1) Ensure 'Enforce password history' is set to '24 or more
password(s)' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting determines the number of renewed, unique passwords that have to be
associated with a user account before you can reuse an old password. The value for this
policy setting must be between 0 and 24 passwords. The default value for Windows Vista is
0 passwords, but the default setting in a domain is 24 passwords. To maintain the
effectiveness of this policy setting, use the Minimum password age setting to prevent users
from repeatedly changing their password.
The recommended state for this setting is: 24 or more password(s).
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Rationale:
The longer a user uses the same password, the greater the chance that an attacker can
determine the password through brute force attacks. Also, any accounts that may have
been compromised will remain exploitable for as long as the password is left unchanged. If
password changes are required but password reuse is not prevented, or if users continually
reuse a small number of passwords, the effectiveness of a good password policy is greatly
reduced.
If you specify a low number for this policy setting, users will be able to use the same small
number of passwords repeatedly. If you do not also configure the Minimum password age
setting, users might repeatedly change their passwords until they can reuse their original
password.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed.
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to 24 or
more password(s):
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Account
Policies\Password Policy\Enforce password history
Impact:
The major impact of this configuration is that users must create a new password every time
they are required to change their old one. If users are required to change their passwords
to new unique values, there is an increased risk of users who write their passwords
somewhere so that they do not forget them. Another risk is that users may create
passwords that change incrementally (for example, password01, password02, and so on)
to facilitate memorization but make them easier to guess. Also, an excessively low value for
the Minimum password age setting will likely increase administrative overhead, because
users who forget their passwords might ask the help desk to reset them frequently.
Default Value:
24 passwords remembered
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References:
1. CCE-37166-6
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1.1.2 (L1) Ensure 'Maximum password age' is set to '60 or fewer days,
but not 0' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting defines how long a user can use their password before it expires.
Values for this policy setting range from 0 to 999 days. If you set the value to 0, the
password will never expire.
Because attackers can crack passwords, the more frequently you change the password the
less opportunity an attacker has to use a cracked password. However, the lower this value
is set, the higher the potential for an increase in calls to help desk support due to users
having to change their password or forgetting which password is current.
The recommended state for this setting is 60 or fewer days, but not 0.
Rationale:
The longer a password exists the higher the likelihood that it will be compromised by a
brute force attack, by an attacker gaining general knowledge about the user, or by the user
sharing the password. Configuring the Maximum password age setting to 0 so that users
are never required to change their passwords is a major security risk because that allows a
compromised password to be used by the malicious user for as long as the valid user is
authorized access.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed.
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to 60 or
fewer days, but not 0:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Account
Policies\Password Policy\Maximum password age
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Impact:
If the Maximum password age setting is too low, users are required to change their
passwords very often. Such a configuration can reduce security in the organization,
because users might write their passwords in an insecure location or lose them. If the value
for this policy setting is too high, the level of security within an organization is reduced
because it allows potential attackers more time in which to discover user passwords or to
use compromised accounts.
Default Value:
42 days
References:
1. CCE-37167-4
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1.1.3 (L1) Ensure 'Minimum password age' is set to '1 or more day(s)'
(Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting determines the number of days that you must use a password before
you can change it. The range of values for this policy setting is between 1 and 999 days.
(You may also set the value to 0 to allow immediate password changes.) The default value
for this setting is 0 days.
The recommended state for this setting is: 1 or more day(s).
Rationale:
Users may have favorite passwords that they like to use because they are easy to
remember and they believe that their password choice is secure from compromise.
Unfortunately, passwords are compromised and if an attacker is targeting a specific
individual user account, with foreknowledge of data about that user, reuse of old
passwords can cause a security breach. To address password reuse a combination of
security settings is required. Using this policy setting with the Enforce password history
setting prevents the easy reuse of old passwords. For example, if you configure the Enforce
password history setting to ensure that users cannot reuse any of their last 12 passwords,
they could change their password 13 times in a few minutes and reuse the password they
started with, unless you also configure the Minimum password age setting to a number that
is greater than 0. You must configure this policy setting to a number that is greater than 0
for the Enforce password history setting to be effective.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed.
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Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to 1 or more
day(s):
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Account
Policies\Password Policy\Minimum password age
Impact:
If an administrator sets a password for a user but wants that user to change the password
when the user first logs on, the administrator must select the User must change password
at next logon check box, or the user will not be able to change the password until the next
day.
Default Value:
0 days
References:
1. CCE-37073-4
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1.1.4 (L1) Ensure 'Minimum password length' is set to '14 or more
character(s)' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting determines the least number of characters that make up a password for
a user account. There are many different theories about how to determine the best
password length for an organization, but perhaps "pass phrase" is a better term than
"password." In Microsoft Windows 2000 or later, pass phrases can be quite long and can
include spaces. Therefore, a phrase such as "I want to drink a $5 milkshake" is a valid pass
phrase; it is a considerably stronger password than an 8 or 10 character string of random
numbers and letters, and yet is easier to remember. Users must be educated about the
proper selection and maintenance of passwords, especially with regard to password length.
In enterprise environments, the ideal value for the Minimum password length setting is 14
characters, however you should adjust this value to meet your organization's business
requirements.
The recommended state for this setting is: 14 or more character(s).
Rationale:
Types of password attacks include dictionary attacks (which attempt to use common words
and phrases) and brute force attacks (which try every possible combination of characters).
Also, attackers sometimes try to obtain the account database so they can use tools to
discover the accounts and passwords.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed.
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Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to 14 or
more character(s):
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Account
Policies\Password Policy\Minimum password length
Impact:
Requirements for extremely long passwords can actually decrease the security of an
organization, because users might leave the information in an insecure location or lose it. If
very long passwords are required, mistyped passwords could cause account lockouts and
increase the volume of help desk calls. If your organization has issues with forgotten
passwords due to password length requirements, consider teaching your users about pass
phrases, which are often easier to remember and, due to the larger number of character
combinations, much harder to discover.
Note: Older versions of Windows such as Windows 98 and Windows NT 4.0 do not support
passwords that are longer than 14 characters. Computers that run these older operating
systems are unable to authenticate with computers or domains that use accounts that
require long passwords.
Default Value:
0 characters
References:
1. CCE-36534-6
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1.1.5 (L1) Ensure 'Password must meet complexity requirements' is set
to 'Enabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting checks all new passwords to ensure that they meet basic requirements
for strong passwords.
When this policy is enabled, passwords must meet the following minimum requirements:
- Not contain the user's account name or parts of the user's full name that exceed two
consecutive characters
- Be at least six characters in length
- Contain characters from three of the following four categories:
- English uppercase characters (A through Z)
- English lowercase characters (a through z)
- Base 10 digits (0 through 9)
- Non-alphabetic characters (for example, !, $, #, %)
- A catch-all category of any Unicode character that does not fall under the previous four
categories. This fifth category can be regionally specific.
Each additional character in a password increases its complexity exponentially. For
instance, a seven-character, all lower-case alphabetic password would have 267
(approximately 8 x 109 or 8 billion) possible combinations. At 1,000,000 attempts per
second (a capability of many password-cracking utilities), it would only take 133 minutes
to crack. A seven-character alphabetic password with case sensitivity has 527
combinations. A seven-character case-sensitive alphanumeric password without
punctuation has 627 combinations. An eight-character password has 268 (or 2 x 1011)
possible combinations. Although this might seem to be a large number, at 1,000,000
attempts per second it would take only 59 hours to try all possible passwords. Remember,
these times will significantly increase for passwords that use ALT characters and other
special keyboard characters such as "!" or "@". Proper use of the password settings can
help make it difficult to mount a brute force attack.
The recommended state for this setting is: Enabled.
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Rationale:
Passwords that contain only alphanumeric characters are extremely easy to discover with
several publicly available tools.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed.
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Enabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Account
Policies\Password Policy\Password must meet complexity requirements
Impact:
If the default password complexity configuration is retained, additional help desk calls for
locked-out accounts could occur because users might not be accustomed to passwords that
contain non-alphabetic characters. However, all users should be able to comply with the
complexity requirement with minimal difficulty.
If your organization has more stringent security requirements, you can create a custom
version of the Passfilt.dll file that allows the use of arbitrarily complex password strength
rules. For example, a custom password filter might require the use of non-upper row
characters. (Upper row characters are those that require you to hold down the SHIFT key
and press any of the digits between 1 and 0.) A custom password filter might also perform
a dictionary check to verify that the proposed password does not contain common
dictionary words or fragments.
Also, the use of ALT key character combinations can greatly enhance the complexity of a
password. However, such stringent password requirements can result in unhappy users
and an extremely busy help desk. Alternatively, your organization could consider a
requirement for all administrator passwords to use ALT characters in the 01280159 range.
(ALT characters outside of this range can represent standard alphanumeric characters that
would not add additional complexity to the password.)
Default Value:
Disabled
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References:
1. CCE-37063-5
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1.1.6 (L1) Ensure 'Store passwords using reversible encryption' is set to
'Disabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting determines whether the operating system stores passwords in a way
that uses reversible encryption, which provides support for application protocols that
require knowledge of the user's password for authentication purposes. Passwords that are
stored with reversible encryption are essentially the same as plaintext versions of the
passwords.
The recommended state for this setting is: Disabled.
Rationale:
Enabling this policy setting allows the operating system to store passwords in a weaker
format that is much more susceptible to compromise and weakens your system security.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed.
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Disabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Account
Policies\Password Policy\Store passwords using reversible encryption
Impact:
If your organization uses either the CHAP authentication protocol through remote access or
IAS services or Digest Authentication in IIS, you must configure this policy setting to
Enabled. This setting is extremely dangerous to apply through Group Policy on a user-byuser basis, because it requires the appropriate user account object to be opened in Active
Directory Users and Computers.
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Default Value:
Disabled
References:
1. CCE-36286-3
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1.2 Account Lockout Policy
This section contains recommendations for account lockout policy.
1.2.1 (L1) Ensure 'Account lockout duration' is set to '15 or more
minute(s)' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting determines the length of time that must pass before a locked account is
unlocked and a user can try to log on again. The setting does this by specifying the number
of minutes a locked out account will remain unavailable. If the value for this policy setting
is configured to 0, locked out accounts will remain locked out until an administrator
manually unlocks them.
Although it might seem like a good idea to configure the value for this policy setting to a
high value, such a configuration will likely increase the number of calls that the help desk
receives to unlock accounts locked by mistake. Users should be aware of the length of time
a lock remains in place, so that they realize they only need to call the help desk if they have
an extremely urgent need to regain access to their computer.
The recommended state for this setting is: 15 or more minute(s).
Rationale:
A denial of service (DoS) condition can be created if an attacker abuses the Account lockout
threshold and repeatedly attempts to log on with a specific account. Once you configure the
Account lockout threshold setting, the account will be locked out after the specified number
of failed attempts. If you configure the Account lockout duration setting to 0, then the
account will remain locked out until an administrator unlocks it manually.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed.
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Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to 15 or
more minute(s):
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Account
Policies\Account Lockout Policy\Account lockout duration
Impact:
Although it may seem like a good idea to configure this policy setting to never
automatically unlock an account, such a configuration can increase the number of requests
that your organization's help desk receives to unlock accounts that were locked by mistake.
Default Value:
Not defined
References:
1. CCE-37034-6
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1.2.2 (L1) Ensure 'Account lockout threshold' is set to '10 or fewer
invalid logon attempt(s), but not 0' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting determines the number of failed logon attempts before the account is
locked. Setting this policy to 0 does not conform with the benchmark as doing so disables
the account lockout threshold.
The recommended state for this setting is: 10 or fewer invalid logon attempt(s), but
not 0.
Rationale:
Setting an account lockout threshold reduces the likelihood that an online password brute
force attack will be successful. Setting the account lockout threshold too low introduces
risk of increased accidental lockouts and/or a malicious actor intentionally locking out
accounts.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed.
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to 10 or
fewer invalid login attempt(s), but not 0:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Account
Policies\Account Lockout Policy\Account lockout threshold
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Impact:
If this policy setting is enabled, a locked-out account will not be usable until it is reset by an
administrator or until the account lockout duration expires. This setting may generate
additional help desk calls.
If you enforce this setting an attacker could cause a denial of service condition by
deliberately generating failed logons for multiple user, therefore you should also configure
the Account Lockout Duration to a relatively low value.
If you configure the Account Lockout Threshold to 0, there is a possibility that an attacker's
attempt to discover passwords with a brute force password attack might go undetected if a
robust audit mechanism is not in place.
Default Value:
0 invalid logon attempts
References:
1. CCE-36008-1
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1.2.3 (L1) Ensure 'Reset account lockout counter after' is set to '15 or
more minute(s)' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting determines the length of time before the Account lockout threshold
resets to zero. The default value for this policy setting is Not Defined. If the Account lockout
threshold is defined, this reset time must be less than or equal to the value for the Account
lockout duration setting.
If you leave this policy setting at its default value or configure the value to an interval that
is too long, your environment could be vulnerable to a DoS attack. An attacker could
maliciously perform a number of failed logon attempts on all users in the organization,
which will lock out their accounts. If no policy were determined to reset the account
lockout, it would be a manual task for administrators. Conversely, if a reasonable time
value is configured for this policy setting, users would be locked out for a set period until
all of the accounts are unlocked automatically.
The recommended state for this setting is: 15 or more minute(s).
Rationale:
Users can accidentally lock themselves out of their accounts if they mistype their password
multiple times. To reduce the chance of such accidental lockouts, the Reset account lockout
counter after setting determines the number of minutes that must elapse before the
counter that tracks failed logon attempts and triggers lockouts is reset to 0.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed.
45 | P a g e
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to 15 or
more minute(s):
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Account
Policies\Account Lockout Policy\Reset account lockout counter after
Impact:
If you do not configure this policy setting or if the value is configured to an interval that is
too long, a DoS attack could occur. An attacker could maliciously attempt to log on to each
user's account numerous times and lock out their accounts as described in the preceding
paragraphs. If you do not configure the Reset account lockout counter after setting,
administrators would have to manually unlock all accounts. If you configure this policy
setting to a reasonable value the users would be locked out for some period, after which
their accounts would unlock automatically. Be sure that you notify users of the values used
for this policy setting so that they will wait for the lockout timer to expire before they call
the help desk about their inability to log on.
Default Value:
0
References:
1. CCE-36883-7
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2 Local Policies
This section contains recommendations for local policies.
2.1 Audit Policy
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
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2.2 User Rights Assignment
This section contains recommendations for user rights assignments.
2.2.1 (L1) Ensure 'Access Credential Manager as a trusted caller' is set to
'No One' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This security setting is used by Credential Manager during Backup and Restore. No
accounts should have this user right, as it is only assigned to Winlogon. Users' saved
credentials might be compromised if this user right is assigned to other entities.
The recommended state for this setting is: No One.
Rationale:
If an account is given this right the user of the account may create an application that calls
into Credential Manager and is returned the credentials for another user.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed.
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to No One:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Local Policies\User
Rights Assignment\Access Credential Manager as a trusted caller
Impact:
None, this is the default configuration.
Default Value:
No one
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References:
1. CCE-37056-9
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2.2.2 (L1) Configure 'Access this computer from the network' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting allows other users on the network to connect to the computer and is
required by various network protocols that include Server Message Block (SMB)based
protocols, NetBIOS, Common Internet File System (CIFS), and Component Object Model
Plus (COM+).

Level 1 - Domain Controller. The recommended state for this setting is:
Administrators, Authenticated Users, ENTERPRISE DOMAIN CONTROLLERS.

Level 1 - Member Server. The recommended state for this setting
is: Administrators, Authenticated Users.
Rationale:
Users who can connect from their computer to the network can access resources on target
computers for which they have permission. For example, the Access this computer from the
network user right is required for users to connect to shared printers and folders. If this
user right is assigned to the Everyone group, then anyone in the group will be able to read
the files in those shared folders. However, this situation is unlikely for new installations of
Windows Server 2003 with Service Pack 1 (SP1), because the default share and NTFS
permissions in Windows Server 2003 do not include the Everyone group. This vulnerability
may have a higher level of risk for computers that you upgrade from Windows NT 4.0 or
Windows 2000, because the default permissions for these operating systems are not as
restrictive as the default permissions in Windows Server 2003.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed.
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Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, configure the following UI path:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Local Policies\User
Rights Assignment\Access this computer from the network
Impact:
If you remove the Access this computer from the network user right on domain controllers
for all users, no one will be able to log on to the domain or use network resources. If you
remove this user right on member servers, users will not be able to connect to those
servers through the network. Successful negotiation of IPsec connections requires that the
initiating machine has this right, therefore it is recommended that it is assigned to the
Users group. If you have installed optional components such as ASP.NET or Internet
Information Services (IIS), you may need to assign this user right to additional accounts
that are required by those components. It is important to verify that authorized users are
assigned this user right for the computers they need to access the network.
Default Value:
Everyone, Administrators, Users, Backup Operators
References:
1. CCE-35818-4
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2.2.3 (L1) Ensure 'Act as part of the operating system' is set to 'No One'
(Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting allows a process to assume the identity of any user and thus gain access
to the resources that the user is authorized to access.
The recommended state for this setting is: No One.
Rationale:
The Act as part of the operating system user right is extremely powerful. Anyone with this
user right can take complete control of the computer and erase evidence of their activities.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed.
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to No One:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Local Policies\User
Rights Assignment\Act as part of the operating system
Impact:
There should be little or no impact because the Act as part of the operating system user
right is rarely needed by any accounts other than the Local System account.
Default Value:
No one
References:
1. CCE-36876-1
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2.2.4 (L1) Ensure 'Add workstations to domain' is set to 'Administrators'
(DC only) (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
Description:
This policy setting specifies which users can add computer workstations to a specific
domain. For this policy setting to take effect, it must be assigned to the user as part of the
Default Domain Controller Policy for the domain. A user who has been assigned this right
can add up to 10 workstations to the domain. Users who have been assigned the Create
Computer Objects permission for an OU or the Computers container in Active Directory can
add an unlimited number of computers to the domain, regardless of whether they have
been assigned the Add workstations to a domain user right.
By default, all users in the Authenticated Users group have the ability to add up to 10
computer accounts to an Active Directory domain. These new computer accounts are
created in the Computers container.
In Windows-based networks, the term security principal is defined as a user, group, or
computer that is automatically assigned a security identifier to control access to resources.
In an Active Directory domain, each computer account is a full security principal with the
ability to authenticate and access domain resources. However, some organizations may
want to limit the number of computers in an Active Directory environment so that they can
consistently track, build, and manage the computers. If users are allowed to add computers
to the domain, tracking and management efforts would be hampered. Also, users could
perform activities that are more difficult to trace because of their ability to create
additional unauthorized domain computers.
The recommended state for this setting is: Administrators.
Rationale:
The Add workstations to domain user right presents a moderate vulnerability. Users with
this right could add a computer to the domain that is configured in a way that violates
organizational security policies. For example, if your organization does not want its users
to have administrative privileges on their computers, a user could install Windows on his
or her computer and then add the computer to the domain. The user would know the
password for the local administrator account, and could log on with that account and then
add his or her domain account to the local Administrators group.
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Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed.
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to
Administrators:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Local Policies\User
Rights Assignment\Add workstations to domain
Impact:
For organizations that have never allowed users to set up their own computers and add
them to the domain, this countermeasure will have no impact. For those that have allowed
some or all users to configure their own computers, this countermeasure will force the
organization to establish a formal process for these procedures going forward. It will not
affect existing computers unless they are removed from and re-added to the domain.
Default Value:
Not defined (Authenticated Users for domain controllers)
References:
1. CCE-36282-2
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2.2.5 (L1) Ensure 'Adjust memory quotas for a process' is set to
'Administrators, LOCAL SERVICE, NETWORK SERVICE' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting allows a user to adjust the maximum amount of memory that is available
to a process. The ability to adjust memory quotas is useful for system tuning, but it can be
abused. In the wrong hands, it could be used to launch a denial of service (DoS) attack.
The recommended state for this setting is: Administrators, LOCAL SERVICE, NETWORK
SERVICE.
Note: A server that holds the Web Server (IIS) Role with Web Server Role Service will
require a special exception to this recommendation, to allow IIS application pool(s) to be
granted this user right.
Rationale:
A user with the Adjust memory quotas for a process privilege can reduce the amount of
memory that is available to any process, which could cause business-critical network
applications to become slow or to fail. In the wrong hands, this privilege could be used to
start a denial of service (DoS) attack.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed.
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to
Administrators, LOCAL SERVICE, NETWORK SERVICE:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Local Policies\User
Rights Assignment\Adjust memory quotas for a process
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Impact:
Organizations that have not restricted users to roles with limited privileges will find it
difficult to impose this countermeasure. Also, if you have installed optional components
such as ASP.NET or IIS, you may need to assign the Adjust memory quotas for a process
user right to additional accounts that are required by those components. Otherwise, this
countermeasure should have no impact on most computers. If this user right is necessary
for a user account, it can be assigned to a local computer account instead of a domain
account.
Default Value:
Administrators, LOCAL SERVICE, NETWORK SERVICE
References:
1. CCE-37071-8
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2.2.6 (L1) Configure 'Allow log on locally' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting determines which users can interactively log on to computers in your
environment. Logons that are initiated by pressing the CTRL+ALT+DEL key sequence on
the client computer keyboard require this user right. Users who attempt to log on through
Terminal Services or IIS also require this user right.
The Guest account is assigned this user right by default. Although this account is disabled
by default, it is recommended that you enable this setting through Group Policy. However,
this user right should generally be restricted to the Administrators and Users groups.
Assign this user right to the Backup Operators group if your organization requires that they
have this capability.


Level 1 - Domain Controller. The recommended state for this setting is:
Administrators, ENTERPRISE DOMAIN CONTROLLERS.
Level 1 - Member Server. The recommended state for this setting is:
Administrators.
Rationale:
Any account with the Allow log on locally user right can log on at the console of the
computer. If you do not restrict this user right to legitimate users who need to be able to
log on to the console of the computer, unauthorized users could download and run
malicious software to elevate their privileges.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed.
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, configure the following UI path:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Local Policies\User
Rights Assignment\Allow log on locally
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Impact:
If you remove these default groups, you could limit the abilities of users who are assigned
to specific administrative roles in your environment. You should confirm that delegated
activities will not be adversely affected by any changes that you make to the Allow log on
locally user rights assignments.
Default Value:
Administrators, Users, Backup Operators
References:
1. CCE-37659-0
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2.2.7 (L1) Configure 'Allow log on through Remote Desktop Services'
(Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting determines which users or groups have the right to log on as a Terminal
Services client. Remote desktop users require this user right. If your organization uses
Remote Assistance as part of its help desk strategy, create a group and assign it this user
right through Group Policy. If the help desk in your organization does not use Remote
Assistance, assign this user right only to the Administrators group or use the restricted
groups feature to ensure that no user accounts are part of the Remote Desktop Users
group.
Restrict this user right to the Administrators group, and possibly the Remote Desktop
Users group, to prevent unwanted users from gaining access to computers on your network
by means of the Remote Assistance feature.

Level 1 - Domain Controller. The recommended state for this setting is:
Administrators.

Level 1 - Member Server. The recommended state for this setting is:
Administrators, Remote Desktop Users.
Note: A server that holds the Remote Desktop Services Role with Remote Desktop Connection
Broker Role Service will require a special exception to this recommendation, to allow the
Authenticated Users group to be granted this user right.
Note #2: The above lists are to be treated as whitelists, which implies that the above
principals need not be present for assessment of this recommendation to pass.
Rationale:
Any account with the Allow log on through Terminal Services user right can log on to the
remote console of the computer. If you do not restrict this user right to legitimate users
who need to log on to the console of the computer, unauthorized users could download and
run malicious software to elevate their privileges.
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Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed.
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, configure the following UI path:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Local Policies\User
Rights Assignment\Allow log on through Remote Desktop Services
Impact:
Removal of the Allow log on through Terminal Services user right from other groups or
membership changes in these default groups could limit the abilities of users who perform
specific administrative roles in your environment. You should confirm that delegated
activities will not be adversely affected.
Default Value:
Administrators, Remote Desktop Users
References:
1. CCE-37072-6
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2.2.8 (L1) Ensure 'Back up files and directories' is set to 'Administrators'
(Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting allows users to circumvent file and directory permissions to back up the
system. This user right is enabled only when an application (such as NTBACKUP) attempts
to access a file or directory through the NTFS file system backup application programming
interface (API). Otherwise, the assigned file and directory permissions apply.
The recommended state for this setting is: Administrators.
Rationale:
Users who are able to back up data from a computer could take the backup media to a nondomain computer on which they have administrative privileges and restore the data. They
could take ownership of the files and view any unencrypted data that is contained within
the backup set.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed.
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to
Administrators.
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Local Policies\User
Rights Assignment\Back up files and directories
Impact:
Changes in the membership of the groups that have the Back up files and directories user
right could limit the abilities of users who are assigned to specific administrative roles in
your environment. You should confirm that authorized backup administrators are still able
to perform backup operations.
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Default Value:
Administrators, Backup Operators
References:
1. CCE-35912-5
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2.2.9 (L1) Ensure 'Change the system time' is set to 'Administrators,
LOCAL SERVICE' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting determines which users and groups can change the time and date on the
internal clock of the computers in your environment. Users who are assigned this user right
can affect the appearance of event logs. When a computer's time setting is changed, logged
events reflect the new time, not the actual time that the events occurred.
When configuring a user right in the SCM enter a comma delimited list of accounts.
Accounts can be either local or located in Active Directory, they can be groups, users, or
computers.
Note: Discrepancies between the time on the local computer and on the domain controllers
in your environment may cause problems for the Kerberos authentication protocol, which
could make it impossible for users to log on to the domain or obtain authorization to access
domain resources after they are logged on. Also, problems will occur when Group Policy is
applied to client computers if the system time is not synchronized with the domain
controllers.
The recommended state for this setting is: Administrators, LOCAL SERVICE.
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Rationale:
Users who can change the time on a computer could cause several problems. For example,
time stamps on event log entries could be made inaccurate, time stamps on files and folders
that are created or modified could be incorrect, and computers that belong to a domain
may not be able to authenticate themselves or users who try to log on to the domain from
them. Also, because the Kerberos authentication protocol requires that the requestor and
authenticator have their clocks synchronized within an administrator-defined skew period,
an attacker who changes a computer's time may cause that computer to be unable to obtain
or grant Kerberos tickets.
The risk from these types of events is mitigated on most domain controllers, member
servers, and end-user computers because the Windows Time service automatically
synchronizes time with domain controllers in the following ways:
• All client desktop computers and member servers use the authenticating domain
controller as their inbound time partner.
• All domain controllers in a domain nominate the primary domain controller (PDC)
emulator operations master as their inbound time partner.
• All PDC emulator operations masters follow the hierarchy of domains in the selection of
their inbound time partner.
• The PDC emulator operations master at the root of the domain is authoritative for the
organization. Therefore it is recommended that you configure this computer to synchronize
with a reliable external time server.
This vulnerability becomes much more serious if an attacker is able to change the system
time and then stop the Windows Time service or reconfigure it to synchronize with a time
server that is not accurate.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed.
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to
Administrators, LOCAL SERVICE:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Local Policies\User
Rights Assignment\Change the system time
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Impact:
There should be no impact, because time synchronization for most organizations should be
fully automated for all computers that belong to the domain. Computers that do not belong
to the domain should be configured to synchronize with an external source.
Default Value:
Administrators, LOCAL SERVICE
References:
1. CCE-37452-0
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2.2.10 (L1) Ensure 'Change the time zone' is set to 'Administrators,
LOCAL SERVICE' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This setting determines which users can change the time zone of the computer. This ability
holds no great danger for the computer and may be useful for mobile workers.
The recommended state for this setting is: Administrators, LOCAL SERVICE.
Rationale:
Changing the time zone represents little vulnerability because the system time is not
affected. This setting merely enables users to display their preferred time zone while being
synchronized with domain controllers in different time zones.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed.
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to
Administrators, LOCAL SERVICE:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Local Policies\User
Rights Assignment\Change the time zone
Impact:
None. This is the default configuration.
Default Value:
Administrators, LOCAL SERVICE
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References:
1. CCE-37700-2
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2.2.11 (L1) Ensure 'Create a pagefile' is set to 'Administrators' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting allows users to change the size of the pagefile. By making the pagefile
extremely large or extremely small, an attacker could easily affect the performance of a
compromised computer.
The recommended state for this setting is: Administrators.
Rationale:
Users who can change the page file size could make it extremely small or move the file to a
highly fragmented storage volume, which could cause reduced computer performance.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed.
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to
Administrators:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Local Policies\User
Rights Assignment\Create a pagefile
Impact:
None. This is the default configuration.
Default Value:
Administrators
References:
1. CCE-35821-8
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2.2.12 (L1) Ensure 'Create a token object' is set to 'No One' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting allows a process to create an access token, which may provide elevated
rights to access sensitive data.
The recommended state for this setting is: No One.
Rationale:
A user account that is given this user right has complete control over the system and can
lead to the system being compromised. It is highly recommended that you do not assign
any user accounts this right.
The operating system examines a user's access token to determine the level of the user's
privileges. Access tokens are built when users log on to the local computer or connect to a
remote computer over a network. When you revoke a privilege, the change is immediately
recorded, but the change is not reflected in the user's access token until the next time the
user logs on or connects. Users with the ability to create or modify tokens can change the
level of access for any currently logged on account. They could escalate their own privileges
or create a DoS condition.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed.
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to No One:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Local Policies\User
Rights Assignment\Create a token object
Impact:
None. This is the default configuration.
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Default Value:
No one
References:
1. CCE-36861-3
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2.2.13 (L1) Ensure 'Create global objects' is set to 'Administrators,
LOCAL SERVICE, NETWORK SERVICE, SERVICE' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting determines whether users can create global objects that are available to
all sessions. Users can still create objects that are specific to their own session if they do not
have this user right.
Users who can create global objects could affect processes that run under other users'
sessions. This capability could lead to a variety of problems, such as application failure or
data corruption.
The recommended state for this setting is: Administrators, LOCAL SERVICE, NETWORK
SERVICE, SERVICE.
Rationale:
Users who can create global objects could affect Windows services and processes that run
under other user or system accounts. This capability could lead to a variety of problems,
such as application failure, data corruption and elevation of privilege.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed.
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to
Administrators, LOCAL SERVICE, NETWORK SERVICE, SERVICE:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Local Policies\User
Rights Assignment\Create global objects
Impact:
None. This is the default configuration.
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Default Value:
Administrators, LOCAL SERVICE, NETWORK SERVICE, SERVICE
References:
1. CCE-37453-8
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2.2.14 (L1) Ensure 'Create permanent shared objects' is set to 'No One'
(Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This user right is useful to kernel-mode components that extend the object namespace.
However, components that run in kernel mode have this user right inherently. Therefore, it
is typically not necessary to specifically assign this user right.
The recommended state for this setting is: No One.
Rationale:
Users who have the Create permanent shared objects user right could create new shared
objects and expose sensitive data to the network.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed.
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to No One:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Local Policies\User
Rights Assignment\Create permanent shared objects
Impact:
None. This is the default configuration.
Default Value:
No one
References:
1. CCE-36532-0
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2.2.15 (L1) Configure 'Create symbolic links' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting determines which users can create symbolic links. In Windows Vista,
existing NTFS file system objects, such as files and folders, can be accessed by referring to a
new kind of file system object called a symbolic link. A symbolic link is a pointer (much like
a shortcut or .lnk file) to another file system object, which can be a file, folder, shortcut or
another symbolic link. The difference between a shortcut and a symbolic link is that a
shortcut only works from within the Windows shell. To other programs and applications,
shortcuts are just another file, whereas with symbolic links, the concept of a shortcut is
implemented as a feature of the NTFS file system.
Symbolic links can potentially expose security vulnerabilities in applications that are not
designed to use them. For this reason, the privilege for creating symbolic links should only
be assigned to trusted users. By default, only Administrators can create symbolic links.

Level 1 - Domain Controller. The recommended state for this setting is:
Administrators.

Level 1 - Member Server. The recommended state for this setting is:
Administrators and (when the Hyper-V Role is installed) NT VIRTUAL
MACHINE\Virtual Machines.
Rationale:
Users who have the Create Symbolic Links user right could inadvertently or maliciously
expose your system to symbolic link attacks. Symbolic link attacks can be used to change
the permissions on a file, to corrupt data, to destroy data, or as a Denial of Service attack.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed.
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Remediation:
To implement the recommended configuration state, configure the following UI path:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Local Policies\User
Rights Assignment\Create symbolic links
Impact:
In most cases there will be no impact because this is the default configuration, however, on
Windows Servers with the Hyper-V server role installed this user right should also be
granted to the special group "Virtual Machines" otherwise you will not be able to create
new virtual machines.
Default Value:
Administrators
References:
1. CCE-35823-4
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2.2.16 (L1) Ensure 'Debug programs' is set to 'Administrators' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting determines which user accounts will have the right to attach a debugger
to any process or to the kernel, which provides complete access to sensitive and critical
operating system components. Developers who are debugging their own applications do
not need to be assigned this user right; however, developers who are debugging new
system components will need it.
The recommended state for this setting is: Administrators.
Rationale:
The Debug programs user right can be exploited to capture sensitive computer information
from system memory, or to access and modify kernel or application structures. Some attack
tools exploit this user right to extract hashed passwords and other private security
information, or to insert rootkit code. By default, the Debug programs user right is assigned
only to administrators, which helps to mitigate the risk from this vulnerability.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed.
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to
Administrators:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Local Policies\User
Rights Assignment\Debug programs
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Impact:
If you revoke this user right, no one will be able to debug programs. However, typical
circumstances rarely require this capability on production computers. If a problem arises
that requires an application to be debugged on a production server, you can move the
server to a different OU temporarily and assign the Debug programs user right to a
separate Group Policy for that OU.
The service account that is used for the cluster service needs the Debug programs privilege;
if it does not have it, Windows Clustering will fail. For additional information about how to
configure Windows Clustering in conjunction with computer hardening, see Microsoft
Knowledge Base article 891597: How to apply more restrictive security settings on a
Windows Server 2003-based cluster server.
Tools that are used to manage processes will be unable to affect processes that are not
owned by the person who runs the tools. For example, the Windows Server 2003 Resource
Kit tool Kill.exe requires this user right for administrators to terminate processes that they
did not start.
Default Value:
Administrators
References:
1. CCE-37075-9
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2.2.17 (L1) Configure 'Deny access to this computer from the network'
(Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting prohibits users from connecting to a computer from across the network,
which would allow users to access and potentially modify data remotely. In high security
environments, there should be no need for remote users to access data on a computer.
Instead, file sharing should be accomplished through the use of network servers.


Level 1 - Domain Controller. The recommended state for this setting is to include:
Guests, Local account.
Level 1 - Member Server. The recommended state for this setting is to include:
Guests, Local account and member of Administrators group.
Caution: Configuring a standalone (non-domain-joined) server as described above may
result in an inability to remotely administer the server.
Note: Configuring a member server or standalone server as described above may adversely
affect applications that create a local service account and place it in the Administrators
group - in which case you must either convert the application to use a domain-hosted
service account, or remove Local account and member of Administrators group from
this User Right Assignment. Using a domain-hosted service account is strongly preferred
over making an exception to this rule, where possible.
Rationale:
Users who can log on to the computer over the network can enumerate lists of account
names, group names, and shared resources. Users with permission to access shared folders
and files can connect over the network and possibly view or modify data.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed.
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Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, configure the following UI path:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Local Policies\User
Rights Assignment\Deny access to this computer from the network
Impact:
If you configure the Deny access to this computer from the network user right for other
groups, you could limit the abilities of users who are assigned to specific administrative
roles in your environment. You should verify that delegated tasks will not be negatively
affected.
Default Value:
Guest
References:
1. CCE-37954-5
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2.2.18 (L1) Ensure 'Deny log on as a batch job' to include 'Guests'
(Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting determines which accounts will not be able to log on to the computer as
a batch job. A batch job is not a batch (.bat) file, but rather a batch-queue facility. Accounts
that use the Task Scheduler to schedule jobs need this user right.
The Deny log on as a batch job user right overrides the Log on as a batch job user right,
which could be used to allow accounts to schedule jobs that consume excessive system
resources. Such an occurrence could cause a DoS condition. Failure to assign this user right
to the recommended accounts can be a security risk.
The recommended state for this setting is to include: Guests.
Rationale:
Accounts that have the Deny log on as a batch job user right could be used to schedule jobs
that could consume excessive computer resources and cause a DoS condition.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed.
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to
include Guests:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Local Policies\User
Rights Assignment\Deny log on as a batch job
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Impact:
If you assign the Deny log on as a batch job user right to other accounts, you could deny
users who are assigned to specific administrative roles the ability to perform their required
job activities. You should confirm that delegated tasks will not be affected adversely.
For example, if you assign this user right to the IWAM_<ComputerName> account, the MSM
Management Point will fail. On a newly installed computer that runs Windows Server 2003
this account does not belong to the Guests group, but on a computer that was upgraded
from Windows 2000 this account is a member of the Guests group. Therefore, it is
important that you understand which accounts belong to any groups that you assign the
Deny log on as a batch job user right.
Default Value:
No one
References:
1. CCE-36923-1
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2.2.19 (L1) Ensure 'Deny log on as a service' to include 'Guests' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This security setting determines which service accounts are prevented from registering a
process as a service. This policy setting supersedes the Log on as a service policy setting if
an account is subject to both policies.
The recommended state for this setting is to include: Guests.
Note: This security setting does not apply to the System, Local Service, or Network Service
accounts.
Rationale:
Accounts that can log on as a service could be used to configure and start new
unauthorized services, such as a keylogger or other malicious software. The benefit of the
specified countermeasure is somewhat reduced by the fact that only users with
administrative privileges can install and configure services, and an attacker who has
already attained that level of access could configure the service to run with the System
account.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed.
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to
include Guests:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Local Policies\User
Rights Assignment\Deny log on as a service
Impact:
If you assign the Deny log on as a service user right to specific accounts, services may not
be able to start and a DoS condition could result.
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Default Value:
No one
References:
1. CCE-36877-9
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2.2.20 (L1) Ensure 'Deny log on locally' to include 'Guests' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This security setting determines which users are prevented from logging on at the
computer. This policy setting supersedes the Allow log on locally policy setting if an
account is subject to both policies.
Important: If you apply this security policy to the Everyone group, no one will be able to
log on locally.
The recommended state for this setting is to include: Guests.
Rationale:
Any account with the ability to log on locally could be used to log on at the console of the
computer. If this user right is not restricted to legitimate users who need to log on to the
console of the computer, unauthorized users might download and run malicious software
that elevates their privileges.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed.
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to
include Guests:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Local Policies\User
Rights Assignment\Deny log on locally
Impact:
If you assign the Deny log on locally user right to additional accounts, you could limit the
abilities of users who are assigned to specific roles in your environment. However, this user
right should explicitly be assigned to the ASPNET account on computers that run IIS 6.0.
You should confirm that delegated activities will not be adversely affected.
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Default Value:
Guests
References:
1. CCE-37146-8
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2.2.21 (L1) Ensure 'Deny log on through Remote Desktop Services' to
include 'Guests, Local account' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting determines whether users can log on as Terminal Services clients. After
the baseline member server is joined to a domain environment, there is no need to use
local accounts to access the server from the network. Domain accounts can access the
server for administration and end-user processing.
The recommended state for this setting is to include: Guests, Local account.
Caution: Configuring a standalone (non-domain-joined) server as described above may
result in an inability to remotely administer the server.
Rationale:
Any account with the right to log on through Terminal Services could be used to log on to
the remote console of the computer. If this user right is not restricted to legitimate users
who need to log on to the console of the computer, unauthorized users might download and
run malicious software that elevates their privileges.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed.
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to include
Guests, Local account:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Local Policies\User
Rights Assignment\Deny log on through Remote Desktop Services
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Impact:
If you assign the Deny log on through Terminal Services user right to other groups, you
could limit the abilities of users who are assigned to specific administrative roles in your
environment. Accounts that have this user right will be unable to connect to the computer
through either Terminal Services or Remote Assistance. You should confirm that delegated
tasks will not be negatively impacted.
Default Value:
No one
References:
1. CCE-36867-0
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2.2.22 (L1) Configure 'Enable computer and user accounts to be trusted
for delegation' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting allows users to change the Trusted for Delegation setting on a computer
object in Active Directory. Abuse of this privilege could allow unauthorized users to
impersonate other users on the network.

Level 1 - Domain Controller. The recommended state for this setting is:
Administrators.

Level 1 - Member Server. The recommended state for this setting is: No One.
Rationale:
Misuse of the Enable computer and user accounts to be trusted for delegation user right
could allow unauthorized users to impersonate other users on the network. An attacker
could exploit this privilege to gain access to network resources and make it difficult to
determine what has happened after a security incident.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed.
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, configure the following UI path:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Local Policies\User
Rights Assignment\Enable computer and user accounts to be trusted for delegation
Impact:
None. This is the default configuration.
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Default Value:
No one
References:
1. CCE-36860-5
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2.2.23 (L1) Ensure 'Force shutdown from a remote system' is set to
'Administrators' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting allows users to shut down Windows Vista-based computers from
remote locations on the network. Anyone who has been assigned this user right can cause a
denial of service (DoS) condition, which would make the computer unavailable to service
user requests. Therefore, it is recommended that only highly trusted administrators be
assigned this user right.
The recommended state for this setting is: Administrators.
Rationale:
Any user who can shut down a computer could cause a DoS condition to occur. Therefore,
this user right should be tightly restricted.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed.
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to
Administrators:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Local Policies\User
Rights Assignment\Force shutdown from a remote system
Impact:
If you remove the Force shutdown from a remote system user right from the Server
Operator group you could limit the abilities of users who are assigned to specific
administrative roles in your environment. You should confirm that delegated activities will
not be adversely affected.
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Default Value:
Administrators
References:
1. CCE-37877-8
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2.2.24 (L1) Ensure 'Generate security audits' is set to 'LOCAL SERVICE,
NETWORK SERVICE' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting determines which users or processes can generate audit records in the
Security log.
The recommended state for this setting is: LOCAL SERVICE, NETWORK SERVICE.
Note: A server that holds the Web Server (IIS) Role with Web Server Role Service will
require a special exception to this recommendation, to allow IIS application pool(s) to be
granted this user right.
Note #2: A server that holds the Active Directory Federation Services Role will require a
special exception to this recommendation, to allow the NT SERVICE\ADFSSrv and NT
SERVICE\DRS services, as well as the associated Active Directory Federation Services
service account, to be granted this user right.
Rationale:
An attacker could use this capability to create a large number of audited events, which
would make it more difficult for a system administrator to locate any illicit activity. Also, if
the event log is configured to overwrite events as needed, any evidence of unauthorized
activities could be overwritten by a large number of unrelated events.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed.
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to LOCAL
SERVICE, NETWORK SERVICE:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Local Policies\User
Rights Assignment\Generate security audits
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Impact:
On most computers, this is the default configuration and there will be no negative impact.
However, if you have installed the Web Server (IIS) Role with Web Services Role Service, you
will need to allow the IIS application pool(s) to be granted this User Right Assignment.
Default Value:
LOCAL SERVICE, NETWORK SERVICE
References:
1. CCE-37639-2
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2.2.25 (L1) Configure 'Impersonate a client after authentication' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
The policy setting allows programs that run on behalf of a user to impersonate that user (or
another specified account) so that they can act on behalf of the user. If this user right is
required for this kind of impersonation, an unauthorized user will not be able to convince a
client to connect—for example, by remote procedure call (RPC) or named pipes—to a
service that they have created to impersonate that client, which could elevate the
unauthorized user's permissions to administrative or system levels.
Services that are started by the Service Control Manager have the built-in Service group
added by default to their access tokens. COM servers that are started by the COM
infrastructure and configured to run under a specific account also have the Service group
added to their access tokens. As a result, these processes are assigned this user right when
they are started.
Also, a user can impersonate an access token if any of the following conditions exist:
- The access token that is being impersonated is for this user.
- The user, in this logon session, logged on to the network with explicit credentials to create
the access token.
- The requested level is less than Impersonate, such as Anonymous or Identify.
An attacker with the Impersonate a client after authentication user right could create a
service, trick a client to make them connect to the service, and then impersonate that client
to elevate the attacker's level of access to that of the client.


Level 1 - Domain Controller. The recommended state for this setting is:
Administrators, LOCAL SERVICE, NETWORK SERVICE, SERVICE.
Level 1 - Member Server. The recommended state for this setting is:
Administrators, LOCAL SERVICE, NETWORK SERVICE, SERVICE and (when the Web
Server (IIS) Role with Web Services Role Service is installed) IIS_IUSRS.
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Rationale:
An attacker with the Impersonate a client after authentication user right could create a
service, trick a client to make them connect to the service, and then impersonate that client
to elevate the attacker's level of access to that of the client.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed.
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, configure the following UI path:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Local Policies\User
Rights Assignment\Impersonate a client after authentication
Impact:
In most cases this configuration will have no impact. If you have installed the Web Server
(IIS) Role with Web Services Role Service, you will need to also assign the user right to
IIS_IUSRS.
Default Value:
Administrators, LOCAL SERVICE, NETWORK SERVICE, SERVICE
References:
1. CCE-37106-2
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2.2.26 (L1) Ensure 'Increase scheduling priority' is set to 'Administrators'
(Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting determines whether users can increase the base priority class of a
process. (It is not a privileged operation to increase relative priority within a priority
class.) This user right is not required by administrative tools that are supplied with the
operating system but might be required by software development tools.
The recommended state for this setting is: Administrators.
Rationale:
A user who is assigned this user right could increase the scheduling priority of a process to
Real-Time, which would leave little processing time for all other processes and could lead
to a DoS condition.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed.
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to
Administrators:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Local Policies\User
Rights Assignment\Increase scheduling priority
Impact:
None. This is the default configuration.
Default Value:
Administrators
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References:
1. CCE-38326-5
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2.2.27 (L1) Ensure 'Load and unload device drivers' is set to
'Administrators' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting allows users to dynamically load a new device driver on a system. An
attacker could potentially use this capability to install malicious code that appears to be a
device driver. This user right is required for users to add local printers or printer drivers in
Windows Vista.
The recommended state for this setting is: Administrators.
Rationale:
Device drivers run as highly privileged code. A user who has the Load and unload device
drivers user right could unintentionally install malicious code that masquerades as a device
driver. Administrators should exercise greater care and install only drivers with verified
digital signatures.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed.
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to
Administrators:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Local Policies\User
Rights Assignment\Load and unload device drivers
Impact:
If you remove the Load and unload device drivers user right from the Print Operators
group or other accounts you could limit the abilities of users who are assigned to specific
administrative roles in your environment. You should ensure that delegated tasks will not
be negatively affected.
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Default Value:
Administrators
References:
1. CCE-36318-4
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2.2.28 (L1) Ensure 'Lock pages in memory' is set to 'No One' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting allows a process to keep data in physical memory, which prevents the
system from paging the data to virtual memory on disk. If this user right is assigned,
significant degradation of system performance can occur.
The recommended state for this setting is: No One.
Rationale:
Users with the Lock pages in memory user right could assign physical memory to several
processes, which could leave little or no RAM for other processes and result in a DoS
condition.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed.
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to No One:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Local Policies\User
Rights Assignment\Lock pages in memory
Impact:
None. This is the default configuration.
Default Value:
No one
References:
1. CCE-36495-0
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2.2.29 (L2) Ensure 'Log on as a batch job' is set to 'Administrators' (DC
Only) (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 2 - Domain Controller
Description:
This policy setting allows accounts to log on using the task scheduler service. Because the
task scheduler is often used for administrative purposes, it may be needed in enterprise
environments. However, its use should be restricted in high security environments to
prevent misuse of system resources or to prevent attackers from using the right to launch
malicious code after gaining user level access to a computer.
When configuring a user right in the SCM enter a comma delimited list of accounts.
Accounts can be either local or located in Active Directory, they can be groups, users, or
computers.
The recommended state for this setting is: Administrators.
Rationale:
The Log on as a batch job user right presents a low-risk vulnerability. For most
organizations, the default settings are sufficient.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed.
Remediation:
To implement the recommended configuration state, set the following Group Policy setting
to Administrators:
Computer Configuration\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Local Policies\User Rights
Assignment\Log on as a batch job
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Impact:
If you configure the Log on as a batch job setting through domain-based Group Policies, the
computer will not be able to assign the user right to accounts that are used for scheduled
jobs in the Task Scheduler. If you install optional components such as ASP.NET or IIS, you
might need to assign this user right to additional accounts that are required by those
components. For example, IIS requires assignment of this user right to the IIS_WPG group
and the IUSR_<ComputerName>, ASPNET, and IWAM_<ComputerName> accounts. If this
user right is not assigned to this group and these accounts, IIS will be unable to run some
COM objects that are necessary for proper functionality.
Default Value:
Administrators, Backup Operators, Performance Log Users
References:
1. CCE-38080-8
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2.2.30 (L1) Configure 'Manage auditing and security log' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting determines which users can change the auditing options for files and
directories and clear the Security log.
For environments running Microsoft Exchange Server, the Exchange Servers group must
possess this privilege on Domain Controllers to properly function. Given this, DCs granting
the Exchange Servers group this privilege do conform with this benchmark. If the
environment does not use Microsoft Exchange Server, then this privilege should be limited
to only Administrators on DCs.

Level 1 - Domain Controller. The recommended state for this setting is:
Administrators and (when Exchange is running in the environment) Exchange
Servers.

Level 1 - Member Server. The recommended state for this setting is:
Administrators.
Rationale:
The ability to manage the Security event log is a powerful user right and it should be closely
guarded. Anyone with this user right can clear the Security log to erase important evidence
of unauthorized activity.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed.
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, configure the following UI path:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Local Policies\User
Rights Assignment\Manage auditing and security log
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Impact:
None. This is the default configuration.
Default Value:
Administrators
References:
1. CCE-35906-7
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2.2.31 (L1) Ensure 'Modify an object label' is set to 'No One' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This privilege determines which user accounts can modify the integrity label of objects,
such as files, registry keys, or processes owned by other users. Processes running under a
user account can modify the label of an object owned by that user to a lower level without
this privilege.
The recommended state for this setting is: No One.
Rationale:
By modifying the integrity label of an object owned by another user a malicious user may
cause them to execute code at a higher level of privilege than intended.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed.
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to No One:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Local Policies\User
Rights Assignment\Modify an object label
Impact:
None, by default the Administrators group has this user right.
Default Value:
None
References:
1. CCE-36054-5
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2.2.32 (L1) Ensure 'Modify firmware environment values' is set to
'Administrators' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting allows users to configure the system-wide environment variables that
affect hardware configuration. This information is typically stored in the Last Known Good
Configuration. Modification of these values and could lead to a hardware failure that would
result in a denial of service condition.
The recommended state for this setting is: Administrators.
Rationale:
Anyone who is assigned the Modify firmware environment values user right could
configure the settings of a hardware component to cause it to fail, which could lead to data
corruption or a DoS condition.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed.
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to
Administrators:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Local Policies\User
Rights Assignment\Modify firmware environment values
Impact:
None. This is the default configuration.
Default Value:
Administrators
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References:
1. CCE-38113-7
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2.2.33 (L1) Ensure 'Perform volume maintenance tasks' is set to
'Administrators' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting allows users to manage the system's volume or disk configuration,
which could allow a user to delete a volume and cause data loss as well as a denial-ofservice condition.
The recommended state for this setting is: Administrators.
Rationale:
A user who is assigned the Perform volume maintenance tasks user right could delete a
volume, which could result in the loss of data or a DoS condition.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed.
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to
Administrators:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Local Policies\User
Rights Assignment\Perform volume maintenance tasks
Impact:
None. This is the default configuration.
Default Value:
Administrators
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References:
1. CCE-36143-6
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2.2.34 (L1) Ensure 'Profile single process' is set to 'Administrators'
(Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting determines which users can use tools to monitor the performance of
non-system processes. Typically, you do not need to configure this user right to use the
Microsoft Management Console (MMC) Performance snap-in. However, you do need this
user right if System Monitor is configured to collect data using Windows Management
Instrumentation (WMI). Restricting the Profile single process user right prevents intruders
from gaining additional information that could be used to mount an attack on the system.
The recommended state for this setting is: Administrators.
Rationale:
The Profile single process user right presents a moderate vulnerability. An attacker with
this user right could monitor a computer's performance to help identify critical processes
that they might wish to attack directly. The attacker may also be able to determine what
processes run on the computer so that they could identify countermeasures that they may
need to avoid, such as antivirus software, an intrusion-detection system, or which other
users are logged on to a computer.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed.
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to
Administrators:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Local Policies\User
Rights Assignment\Profile single process
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Impact:
If you remove the Profile single process user right from the Power Users group or other
accounts, you could limit the abilities of users who are assigned to specific administrative
roles in your environment. You should ensure that delegated tasks will not be negatively
affected.
Default Value:
Administrators
References:
1. CCE-37131-0
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2.2.35 (L1) Ensure 'Profile system performance' is set to 'Administrators,
NT SERVICE\WdiServiceHost' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting allows users to use tools to view the performance of different system
processes, which could be abused to allow attackers to determine a system's active
processes and provide insight into the potential attack surface of the computer.
The recommended state for this setting is: Administrators, NT SERVICE\WdiServiceHost.
Rationale:
The Profile system performance user right poses a moderate vulnerability. Attackers with
this user right could monitor a computer's performance to help identify critical processes
that they might wish to attack directly. Attackers may also be able to determine what
processes are active on the computer so that they could identify countermeasures that they
may need to avoid, such as antivirus software or an intrusion detection system.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed.
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to
Administrators, NT SERVICE\WdiServiceHost:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Local Policies\User
Rights Assignment\Profile system performance
Impact:
None. This is the default configuration.
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Default Value:
Administrators, NT SERVICE\WdiServiceHost
References:
1. CCE-36052-9
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2.2.36 (L1) Ensure 'Replace a process level token' is set to 'LOCAL
SERVICE, NETWORK SERVICE' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting allows one process or service to start another service or process with a
different security access token, which can be used to modify the security access token of
that sub-process and result in the escalation of privileges.
The recommended state for this setting is: LOCAL SERVICE, NETWORK SERVICE.
Note: A server that holds the Web Server (IIS) Role with Web Server Role Service will
require a special exception to this recommendation, to allow IIS application pool(s) to be
granted this user right.
Rationale:
User with the Replace a process level token privilege are able to start processes as other
users whose credentials they know. They could use this method to hide their unauthorized
actions on the computer. (On Windows 2000-based computers, use of the Replace a
process level token user right also requires the user to have the Adjust memory quotas for
a process user right that is discussed earlier in this section.)
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed.
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to LOCAL
SERVICE, NETWORK SERVICE:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Local Policies\User
Rights Assignment\Replace a process level token
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Impact:
On most computers, this is the default configuration and there will be no negative impact.
However, if you have installed the Web Server (IIS) Role with Web Services Role Service, you
will need to allow the IIS application pool(s) to be granted this User Right Assignment.
Default Value:
LOCAL SERVICE, NETWORK SERVICE
References:
1. CCE-37430-6
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2.2.37 (L1) Ensure 'Restore files and directories' is set to 'Administrators'
(Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting determines which users can bypass file, directory, registry, and other
persistent object permissions when restoring backed up files and directories on computers
that run Windows Vista in your environment. This user right also determines which users
can set valid security principals as object owners; it is similar to the Back up files and
directories user right.
The recommended state for this setting is: Administrators.
Rationale:
An attacker with the Restore files and directories user right could restore sensitive data to
a computer and overwrite data that is more recent, which could lead to loss of important
data, data corruption, or a denial of service. Attackers could overwrite executable files that
are used by legitimate administrators or system services with versions that include
malicious software to grant themselves elevated privileges, compromise data, or install
backdoors for continued access to the computer.
Note: Even if the following countermeasure is configured, an attacker could still restore
data to a computer in a domain that is controlled by the attacker. Therefore, it is critical
that organizations carefully protect the media that are used to back up data.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed.
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Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to
Administrators:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Local Policies\User
Rights Assignment\Restore files and directories
Impact:
If you remove the Restore files and directories user right from the Backup Operators group
and other accounts you could make it impossible for users who have been delegated
specific tasks to perform those tasks. You should verify that this change won't negatively
affect the ability of your organization's personnel to do their jobs.
Default Value:
Administrators, Backup Operators
References:
1. CCE-37613-7
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2.2.38 (L1) Ensure 'Shut down the system' is set to 'Administrators'
(Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting determines which users who are logged on locally to the computers in
your environment can shut down the operating system with the Shut Down command.
Misuse of this user right can result in a denial of service condition.
The recommended state for this setting is: Administrators.
Rationale:
The ability to shut down domain controllers and member servers should be limited to a
very small number of trusted administrators. Although the Shut down the system user
right requires the ability to log on to the server, you should be very careful about which
accounts and groups you allow to shut down a domain controller or member server.
When a domain controller is shut down, it is no longer available to process logons, serve
Group Policy, and answer Lightweight Directory Access Protocol (LDAP) queries. If you
shut down domain controllers that possess Flexible Single Master Operations (FSMO) roles,
you can disable key domain functionality, such as processing logons for new passwords—
the Primary Domain Controller (PDC) Emulator role.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed.
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to
Administrators:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Local Policies\User
Rights Assignment\Shut down the system
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Impact:
The impact of removing these default groups from the Shut down the system user right
could limit the delegated abilities of assigned roles in your environment. You should
confirm that delegated activities will not be adversely affected.
Default Value:
Administrators, Backup Operators
References:
1. CCE-38328-1
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2.2.39 (L1) Ensure 'Synchronize directory service data' is set to 'No One'
(DC only) (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
Description:
This security setting determines which users and groups have the authority to synchronize
all directory service data.
The recommended state for this setting is: No One.
Rationale:
The Synchronize directory service data user right affects domain controllers; only domain
controllers should be able to synchronize directory service data. Domain controllers have
this user right inherently, because the synchronization process runs in the context of the
System account on domain controllers. Attackers who have this user right can view all
information stored within the directory. They could then use some of that information to
facilitate additional attacks or expose sensitive data, such as direct telephone numbers or
physical addresses.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed.
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to No One:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Local Policies\User
Rights Assignment\Synchronize directory service data
Impact:
None. This is the default configuration.
Default Value:
Not defined
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References:
1. CCE-36099-0
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2.2.40 (L1) Ensure 'Take ownership of files or other objects' is set to
'Administrators' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting allows users to take ownership of files, folders, registry keys, processes,
or threads. This user right bypasses any permissions that are in place to protect objects to
give ownership to the specified user.
The recommended state for this setting is: Administrators.
Rationale:
Any users with the Take ownership of files or other objects user right can take control of
any object, regardless of the permissions on that object, and then make any changes they
wish to that object. Such changes could result in exposure of data, corruption of data, or a
DoS condition.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed.
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to
Administrators:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Local Policies\User
Rights Assignment\Take ownership of files or other objects
Impact:
None. This is the default configuration.
Default Value:
Administrators
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References:
1. CCE-38325-7
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2.3 Security Options
This section contains recommendations for security options.
2.3.1 Accounts
This section contains recommendations related to default accounts.
2.3.1.1 (L1) Ensure 'Accounts: Administrator account status' is set to
'Disabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting enables or disables the Administrator account during normal operation.
When a computer is booted into safe mode, the Administrator account is always enabled,
regardless of how this setting is configured. Note that this setting will have no impact when
applied to the domain controller organizational unit via group policy because domain
controllers have no local account database. It can be configured at the domain level via
group policy, similar to account lockout and password policy settings.
The recommended state for this setting is: Disabled.
Rationale:
In some organizations, it can be a daunting management challenge to maintain a regular
schedule for periodic password changes for local accounts. Therefore, you may want to
disable the built-in Administrator account instead of relying on regular password changes
to protect it from attack. Another reason to disable this built-in account is that it cannot be
locked out no matter how many failed logons it accrues, which makes it a prime target for
brute force attacks that attempt to guess passwords. Also, this account has a well-known
security identifier (SID) and there are third-party tools that allow authentication by using
the SID rather than the account name. This capability means that even if you rename the
Administrator account, an attacker could launch a brute force attack by using the SID to log
on.
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Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed.
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Disabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Local
Policies\Security Options\Accounts: Administrator account status
Impact:
Maintenance issues can arise under certain circumstances if you disable the Administrator
account. For example, if the secure channel between a member computer and the domain
controller fails in a domain environment for any reason and there is no other local
Administrator account, you must restart in safe mode to fix the problem that broke the
secure channel.
If the current Administrator password does not meet the password requirements, you will
not be able to re-enable the Administrator account after it is disabled. If this situation
occurs, another member of the Administrators group must set the password on the
Administrator account with the Local Users and Groups tool.
Default Value:
Disabled
References:
1. CCE-37953-7
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2.3.1.2 (L1) Ensure 'Accounts: Block Microsoft accounts' is set to 'Users
can't add or log on with Microsoft accounts' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting prevents users from adding new Microsoft accounts on this computer.
If you select the "Users can't add Microsoft accounts" option, users will not be able to create
new Microsoft accounts on this computer, switch a local account to a Microsoft account, or
connect a domain account to a Microsoft account. This is the preferred option if you need to
limit the use of Microsoft accounts in your enterprise.
If you select the "Users can't add or log on with Microsoft accounts" option, existing
Microsoft account users will not be able to log on to Windows. Selecting this option might
make it impossible for an existing administrator on this computer to log on and manage the
system.
If you disable or do not configure this policy (recommended), users will be able to use
Microsoft accounts with Windows.
The recommended state for this setting is: Users can't add or log on with Microsoft
accounts.
Rationale:
Organizations that want to effectively implement identity management policies and
maintain firm control of what accounts are used to log onto their computers will probably
want to block Microsoft accounts. Organizations may also need to block Microsoft accounts
in order to meet the requirements of compliance standards that apply to their information
systems.
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Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Policies\System:NoConnect
edUser
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Users
can't add or log on with Microsoft accounts:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Local
Policies\Security Options\Accounts: Block Microsoft accounts
Impact:
Users will not be able to log onto the computer with their Microsoft account.
Default Value:
Not defined
References:
1. CCE-36147-7
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2.3.1.3 (L1) Ensure 'Accounts: Guest account status' is set to 'Disabled'
(Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting determines whether the Guest account is enabled or disabled. The Guest
account allows unauthenticated network users to gain access to the system. Note that this
setting will have no impact when applied to the domain controller organizational unit via
group policy because domain controllers have no local account database. It can be
configured at the domain level via group policy, similar to account lockout and password
policy settings.
The recommended state for this setting is: Disabled.
Rationale:
The default Guest account allows unauthenticated network users to log on as Guest with no
password. These unauthorized users could access any resources that are accessible to the
Guest account over the network. This capability means that any network shares with
permissions that allow access to the Guest account, the Guests group, or the Everyone
group will be accessible over the network, which could lead to the exposure or corruption
of data.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed.
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Disabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Local
Policies\Security Options\Accounts: Guest account status
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Impact:
All network users will need to authenticate before they can access shared resources. If you
disable the Guest account and the Network Access: Sharing and Security Model option is set
to Guest Only, network logons, such as those performed by the Microsoft Network Server
(SMB Service), will fail. This policy setting should have little impact on most organizations
because it is the default setting in Microsoft Windows 2000, Windows XP, and Windows
Server™ 2003.
Default Value:
Disabled
References:
1. CCE-37432-2
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2.3.1.4 (L1) Ensure 'Accounts: Limit local account use of blank
passwords to console logon only' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting determines whether local accounts that are not password protected can
be used to log on from locations other than the physical computer console. If you enable
this policy setting, local accounts that have blank passwords will not be able to log on to the
network from remote client computers. Such accounts will only be able to log on at the
keyboard of the computer.
The recommended state for this setting is: Enabled.
Rationale:
Blank passwords are a serious threat to computer security and should be forbidden
through both organizational policy and suitable technical measures. In fact, the default
settings for Active Directory domains require complex passwords of at least seven
characters. However, if users with the ability to create new accounts bypass your domainbased password policies, they could create accounts with blank passwords. For example, a
user could build a stand-alone computer, create one or more accounts with blank
passwords, and then join the computer to the domain. The local accounts with blank
passwords would still function. Anyone who knows the name of one of these unprotected
accounts could then use it to log on.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\System\CurrentControlSet\Control\Lsa:LimitBlankPasswordUse
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Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Enabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Local
Policies\Security Options\Accounts: Limit local account use of blank passwords to
console logon only
Impact:
None. This is the default configuration.
Default Value:
Enabled
References:
1. CCE-37615-2
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2.3.1.5 (L1) Configure 'Accounts: Rename administrator account'
(Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
The built-in local administrator account is a well-known account name that attackers will
target. It is recommended to choose another name for this account, and to avoid names that
denote administrative or elevated access accounts. Be sure to also change the default
description for the local administrator (through the Computer Management console).
Rationale:
The Administrator account exists on all computers that run the Windows 2000 or later
operating systems. If you rename this account, it is slightly more difficult for unauthorized
persons to guess this privileged user name and password combination.
The built-in Administrator account cannot be locked out, regardless of how many times an
attacker might use a bad password. This capability makes the Administrator account a
popular target for brute force attacks that attempt to guess passwords. The value of this
countermeasure is lessened because this account has a well-known SID, and there are
third-party tools that allow authentication by using the SID rather than the account name.
Therefore, even if you rename the Administrator account, an attacker could launch a brute
force attack by using the SID to log on.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed.
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, configure the following UI path:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Local
Policies\Security Options\Accounts: Rename administrator account
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Impact:
You will have to inform users who are authorized to use this account of the new account
name. (The guidance for this setting assumes that the Administrator account was not
disabled, which was recommended earlier in this chapter.)
Default Value:
Administrator
References:
1. CCE-38233-3
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2.3.1.6 (L1) Configure 'Accounts: Rename guest account' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
The built-in local guest account is another well-known name to attackers. It is
recommended to rename this account to something that does not indicate its purpose. Even
if you disable this account, which is recommended, ensure that you rename it for added
security.
Rationale:
The Guest account exists on all computers that run the Windows 2000 or later operating
systems. If you rename this account. it is slightly more difficult for unauthorized persons to
guess this privileged user name and password combination.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed.
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, configure the following UI path:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Local
Policies\Security Options\Accounts: Rename guest account
Impact:
There should be little impact, because the Guest account is disabled by default.
Default Value:
Guest
References:
1. CCE-38027-9
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2.3.2 Audit
This section contains recommendations related to auditing controls.
2.3.2.1 (L1) Ensure 'Audit: Force audit policy subcategory settings
(Windows Vista or later) to override audit policy category settings' is set
to 'Enabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting allows administrators to enable the more precise auditing capabilities
present in Windows Vista.
The Audit Policy settings available in Windows Server 2003 Active Directory do not yet
contain settings for managing the new auditing subcategories. To properly apply the
auditing policies prescribed in this baseline, the Audit: Force audit policy subcategory
settings (Windows Vista or later) to override audit policy category settings setting needs to
be configured to Enabled.
The recommended state for this setting is: Enabled.
Rationale:
Prior to the introduction of auditing subcategories in Windows Vista, it was difficult to
track events at a per-system or per-user level. The larger event categories created too
many events and the key information that needed to be audited was difficult to find.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\System\CurrentControlSet\Control\Lsa:scenoapplylegacyauditpolicy
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Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Enabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Local
Policies\Security Options\Audit: Force audit policy subcategory settings (Windows
Vista or later) to override audit policy category settings
Impact:
The individual audit policy subcategories that are available in Windows Vista are not
exposed in the interface of Group Policy tools. Administrators can deploy a custom audit
policy that applies detailed security auditing settings to Windows Vista-based client
computers in a Windows Server 2003 domain or in a Windows 2000 domain. If after
enabling this setting, you attempt to modify an auditing setting by using Group Policy, the
Group Policy auditing setting will be ignored in favor of the custom policy setting. To
modify auditing settings by using Group Policy, you must first disable this key.
Important: Be very cautious about audit settings that can generate a large volume of
traffic. For example, if you enable either success or failure auditing for all of the Privilege
Use subcategories, the high volume of audit events generated can make it difficult to find
other types of entries in the Security log. Such a configuration could also have a significant
impact on system performance.
Default Value:
Not defined
References:
1. CCE-37850-5
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2.3.2.2 (L1) Ensure 'Audit: Shut down system immediately if unable to
log security audits' is set to 'Disabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting determines whether the system shuts down if it is unable to log Security
events. It is a requirement for Trusted Computer System Evaluation Criteria (TCSEC)-C2
and Common Criteria certification to prevent auditable events from occurring if the audit
system is unable to log them. Microsoft has chosen to meet this requirement by halting the
system and displaying a stop message if the auditing system experiences a failure. When
this policy setting is enabled, the system will be shut down if a security audit cannot be
logged for any reason.
If the Audit: Shut down system immediately if unable to log security audits setting is
enabled, unplanned system failures can occur. Therefore, this policy setting is configured to
Not Defined for both of the environments that are discussed in this chapter.
The recommended state for this setting is: Disabled.
Rationale:
If the computer is unable to record events to the Security log, critical evidence or important
troubleshooting information may not be available for review after a security incident. Also,
an attacker could potentially generate a large volume of Security log events to purposely
force a computer shutdown.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\System\CurrentControlSet\Control\Lsa:crashonauditfail
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Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Disabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Local
Policies\Security Options\Audit: Shut down system immediately if unable to log
security audits
Impact:
If you enable this policy setting, the administrative burden can be significant, especially if
you also configure the Retention method for the Security log to Do not overwrite events
(clear log manually). This configuration causes a repudiation threat (a backup operator
could deny that they backed up or restored data) to become a denial of service (DoS)
vulnerability, because a server could be forced to shut down if it is overwhelmed with
logon events and other security events that are written to the Security log. Also, because
the shutdown is not graceful, it is possible that irreparable damage to the operating system,
applications, or data could result. Although the NTFS file system guarantees its integrity
when an ungraceful computer shutdown occurs, it cannot guarantee that every data file for
every application will still be in a usable form when the computer restarts.
Default Value:
Disabled
References:
1. CCE-35907-5
2.3.3 DCOM
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
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2.3.4 Devices
This section contains recommendations related to managing devices.
2.3.4.1 (L1) Ensure 'Devices: Allowed to format and eject removable
media' is set to 'Administrators' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting determines who is allowed to format and eject removable NTFS media.
You can use this policy setting to prevent unauthorized users from removing data on one
computer to access it on another computer on which they have local administrator
privileges.
The recommended state for this setting is: Administrators.
Rationale:
Users may be able to move data on removable disks to a different computer where they
have administrative privileges. The user could then take ownership of any file, grant
themselves full control, and view or modify any file. The fact that most removable storage
devices will eject media by pressing a mechanical button diminishes the advantage of this
policy setting.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\Winlogon:AllocateDASD
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to
Administrators:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Local
Policies\Security Options\Devices: Allowed to format and eject removable media
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Impact:
None - this is the default value. Only Administrators will be able to format and eject
removable NTFS media.
Default Value:
Administrators
References:
1. CCE-37701-0
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2.3.4.2 (L1) Ensure 'Devices: Prevent users from installing printer drivers'
is set to 'Enabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
For a computer to print to a shared printer, the driver for that shared printer must be
installed on the local computer. This security setting determines who is allowed to install a
printer driver as part of connecting to a shared printer. If this setting is enabled, only
Administrators can install a printer driver as part of connecting to a shared printer. If this
setting is disabled, any user can install a printer driver as part of connecting to a shared
printer.
The recommended state for this setting is: Enabled.
Note: This setting does not affect the ability to add a local printer. This setting does not
affect Administrators.
Rationale:
It may be appropriate in some organizations to allow users to install printer drivers on
their own workstations. However, you should allow only Administrators, not users, to do so
on servers, because printer driver installation on a server may unintentionally cause the
computer to become less stable. A malicious user could install inappropriate printer
drivers in a deliberate attempt to damage the computer, or a user might accidentally install
malicious software that masquerades as a printer driver. It is feasible for an attacker to
disguise a Trojan horse program as a printer driver. The program may appear to users as if
they must use it to print, but such a program could unleash malicious code on your
computer network.
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Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\System\CurrentControlSet\Control\Print\Providers\LanMan Print
Services\Servers:AddPrinterDrivers
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Enabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Local
Policies\Security Options\Devices: Prevent users from installing printer drivers
Impact:
Only Administrators will be able to install a printer driver as part of connecting to a shared
printer. The ability to add a local printer will not be affected.
Default Value:
Enabled
References:
1. CCE-37942-0
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2.3.5 Domain controller
This section contains recommendations related to domain controllers.
2.3.5.1 (L1) Ensure 'Domain controller: Allow server operators to
schedule tasks' is set to 'Disabled' (DC only) (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
Description:
This policy setting determines whether members of the Server Operators group are
allowed to submit jobs by means of the AT schedule facility. The impact of this policy
setting configuration should be small for most organizations. Users, including those in the
Server Operators group, will still be able to create jobs by means of the Task Scheduler
Wizard, but those jobs will run in the context of the account with which the user
authenticates when they set up the job.
Note: An AT Service Account can be modified to select a different account rather than the
LOCAL SYSTEM account. To change the account, open System Tools, click Scheduled Tasks,
and then click Accessories folder. Then click AT Service Account on the Advanced menu.
The recommended state for this setting is: Disabled.
Rationale:
If you enable this policy setting, jobs that are created by server operators by means of the
AT service will execute in the context of the account that runs that service. By default, that
is the local SYSTEM account. If you enable this policy setting, server operators could
perform tasks that SYSTEM is able to do but that they would typically not be able to do,
such as add their account to the local Administrators group.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\System\CurrentControlSet\Control\Lsa:SubmitControl
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Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Disabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Local
Policies\Security Options\Domain controller: Allow server operators to schedule tasks
Impact:
The impact should be small for most organizations. Users (including those in the Server
Operators group) will still be able to create jobs by means of the Task Scheduler Wizard.
However, those jobs will run in the context of the account that the user authenticates with
when setting up the job.
Default Value:
Not defined
References:
1. CCE-37848-9
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2.3.5.2 (L1) Ensure 'Domain controller: LDAP server signing
requirements' is set to 'Require signing' (DC only) (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
Description:
This policy setting determines whether the Lightweight Directory Access Protocol (LDAP)
server requires LDAP clients to negotiate data signing.
The recommended state for this setting is: Require signing.
Rationale:
Unsigned network traffic is susceptible to man-in-the-middle attacks. In such attacks, an
intruder captures packets between the server and the client, modifies them, and then
forwards them to the client. Where LDAP servers are concerned, an attacker could cause a
client to make decisions that are based on false records from the LDAP directory. To lower
the risk of such an intrusion in an organization's network, you can implement strong
physical security measures to protect the network infrastructure. Also, you could
implement Internet Protocol security (IPsec) authentication header mode (AH), which
performs mutual authentication and packet integrity for IP traffic to make all types of manin-the-middle attacks extremely difficult.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\System\CurrentControlSet\Services\NTDS\Parameters:ldapserverintegri
ty
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Require
signing:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Local
Policies\Security Options\Domain controller: LDAP server signing requirements
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Impact:
Clients that do not support LDAP signing will be unable to run LDAP queries against the
domain controllers. All Windows 2000-based computers in your organization that are
managed from Windows Server 2003-based or Windows XP-based computers and that use
Windows NT Challenge/Response (NTLM) authentication must have Windows 2000
Service Pack 3 (SP3) installed. Alternatively, these clients must have a registry change. For
information about this registry change, see Microsoft Knowledge Base article 325465:
Windows 2000 domain controllers require SP3 or later when using Windows Server 2003
administration tools. Also, some non-Microsoft operating systems do not support LDAP
signing. If you enable this policy setting, client computers that use those operating systems
may be unable to access domain resources.
Default Value:
Not defined
References:
1. CCE-35904-2
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2.3.5.3 (L1) Ensure 'Domain controller: Refuse machine account
password changes' is set to 'Disabled' (DC only) (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
Description:
This security setting determines whether domain controllers will refuse requests from
member computers to change computer account passwords. By default, member
computers change their computer account passwords every 30 days. If enabled, the domain
controller will refuse computer account password change requests.
If it is enabled, this setting does not allow a domain controller to accept any changes to a
computer account's password.
Default: This policy is not defined, which means that the system treats it as Disabled.
The recommended state for this setting is: Disabled.
Rationale:
If you enable this policy setting on all domain controllers in a domain, domain members
will not be able to change their computer account passwords, and those passwords will be
more susceptible to attack.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\System\CurrentControlSet\Services\Netlogon\Parameters:RefusePasswor
dChange
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Disabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Local
Policies\Security Options\Domain controller: Refuse machine account password changes
Impact:
None. This is the default configuration.
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Default Value:
Not defined
References:
1. CCE-36921-5
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2.3.6 Domain member
This section contains recommendations related to domain membership.
2.3.6.1 (L1) Ensure 'Domain member: Digitally encrypt or sign secure
channel data (always)' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting determines whether all secure channel traffic that is initiated by the
domain member must be signed or encrypted. If a system is set to always encrypt or sign
secure channel data, it cannot establish a secure channel with a domain controller that is
not capable of signing or encrypting all secure channel traffic, because all secure channel
data must be signed and encrypted.
Microsoft recommends to configure the Domain member: Digitally encrypt or sign secure
channel data (always) setting to Enabled.
The recommended state for this setting is: Enabled.
Rationale:
When a computer joins a domain, a computer account is created. After it joins the domain,
the computer uses the password for that account to create a secure channel with the
domain controller for its domain every time that it restarts. Requests that are sent on the
secure channel are authenticated—and sensitive information such as passwords are
encrypted—but the channel is not integrity-checked, and not all information is encrypted.
If a computer is configured to always encrypt or sign secure channel data but the domain
controller cannot sign or encrypt any portion of the secure channel data, the computer and
domain controller cannot establish a secure channel. If the computer is configured to
encrypt or sign secure channel data when possible, a secure channel can be established, but
the level of encryption and signing is negotiated.
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Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\System\CurrentControlSet\Services\Netlogon\Parameters:requiresignor
seal
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Enabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Local
Policies\Security Options\Domain member: Digitally encrypt or sign secure channel data
(always)
Impact:
Digital encryption and signing of the secure channel is a good idea where it is supported.
The secure channel protects domain credentials as they are sent to the domain controller.
However, only Windows NT 4.0 with Service Pack 6a (SP6a) and subsequent versions of
the Windows operating system support digital encryption and signing of the secure
channel. Windows 98 Second Edition clients do not support it unless they have the Dsclient
installed. Therefore, you cannot enable the Domain member: Digitally encrypt or sign
secure channel data (always) setting on domain controllers that support Windows 98
clients as members of the domain. Potential impacts can include the following:
• The ability to create or delete trust relationships with clients running versions of
Windows earlier than Windows NT 4.0 with SP6a will be disabled.
• Logons from clients running versions of Windows earlier than Windows NT 4.0 with SP6a
will be disabled.
• The ability to authenticate other domains' users from a domain controller running a
version of Windows earlier than Windows NT 4.0 with SP6a in a trusted domain will be
disabled.
You can enable this policy setting after you eliminate all Windows 9x clients from the
domain and upgrade all Windows NT 4.0 servers and domain controllers from
trusted/trusting domains to Windows NT 4.0 with SP6a. You can enable the other two
policy settings, Domain member: Digitally encrypt secure channel data (when possible) and
Domain member: Digitally encrypt sign channel data (when possible), on all computers in
the domain that support them and clients running versions of Windows earlier than
Windows NT 4.0 with SP6a and applications that run on these versions of Windows will not
be affected.
Digital encryption and signing of the secure channel is a good idea where it is supported.
The secure channel protects domain credentials as they are sent to the domain controller.
However, only Windows NT 4.0 with Service Pack 6a (SP6a) and subsequent versions of
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the Windows operating system support digital encryption and signing of the secure
channel. Windows 98 Second Edition clients do not support it unless they have the Dsclient
installed. Therefore, you cannot enable the Domain member: Digitally encrypt or sign
secure channel data (always) setting on domain controllers that support Windows 98
clients as members of the domain. Potential impacts can include the following:
• The ability to create or delete trust relationships with clients running versions of
Windows earlier than Windows NT 4.0 with SP6a will be disabled.
• Logons from clients running versions of Windows earlier than Windows NT 4.0 with SP6a
will be disabled.
• The ability to authenticate other domains' users from a domain controller running a
version of Windows earlier than Windows NT 4.0 with SP6a in a trusted domain will be
disabled.
You can enable this policy setting after you eliminate all Windows 9x clients from the
domain and upgrade all Windows NT 4.0 servers and domain controllers from
trusted/trusting domains to Windows NT 4.0 with SP6a. You can enable the other two
policy settings, Domain member: Digitally encrypt secure channel data (when possible) and
Domain member: Digitally encrypt sign channel data (when possible), on all computers in
the domain that support them and clients running versions of Windows earlier than
Windows NT 4.0 with SP6a and applications that run on these versions of Windows will not
be affected.
Default Value:
Enabled
References:
1. CCE-36142-8
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2.3.6.2 (L1) Ensure 'Domain member: Digitally encrypt secure channel
data (when possible)' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting determines whether a domain member should attempt to negotiate
encryption for all secure channel traffic that it initiates. If you enable this policy setting, the
domain member will request encryption of all secure channel traffic. If you disable this
policy setting, the domain member will be prevented from negotiating secure channel
encryption.
Microsoft recommends to configure the Domain member: Digitally encrypt secure channel
data (when possible) setting to Enabled.
The recommended state for this setting is: Enabled.
Rationale:
When a Windows Server 2003, Windows XP, Windows 2000, or Windows NT computer
joins a domain, a computer account is created. After it joins the domain, the computer uses
the password for that account to create a secure channel with the domain controller for its
domain every time that it restarts. Requests that are sent on the secure channel are
authenticated—and sensitive information such as passwords are encrypted—but the
channel is not integrity-checked, and not all information is encrypted. If a computer is
configured to always encrypt or sign secure channel data but the domain controller cannot
sign or encrypt any portion of the secure channel data, the computer and domain controller
cannot establish a secure channel. If the computer is configured to encrypt or sign secure
channel data when possible, a secure channel can be established, but the level of
encryption and signing is negotiated.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\System\CurrentControlSet\Services\Netlogon\Parameters:sealsecurecha
nnel
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Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Enabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Local
Policies\Security Options\Domain member: Digitally encrypt secure channel data (when
possible)
Impact:
Digital encryption and signing of the secure channel is a good idea where it is supported.
The secure channel protects domain credentials as they are sent to the domain controller.
However, only Windows NT 4.0 Service Pack 6a (SP6a) and subsequent versions of the
Windows operating system support digital encryption and signing of the secure channel.
Windows 98 Second Edition clients do not support it unless they have the Dsclient
installed. Therefore, you cannot enable the Domain member: Digitally encrypt or sign
secure channel data (always) setting on domain controllers that support Windows 98
clients as members of the domain. Potential impacts can include the following:
Default Value:
Enabled
References:
1. CCE-37130-2
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2.3.6.3 (L1) Ensure 'Domain member: Digitally sign secure channel data
(when possible)' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting determines whether a domain member should attempt to negotiate
whether all secure channel traffic that it initiates must be digitally signed. Digital signatures
protect the traffic from being modified by anyone who captures the data as it traverses the
network.
Microsoft recommends to configure the Domain member: Digitally sign secure channel data
(when possible) setting to Enabled.
The recommended state for this setting is: Enabled.
Rationale:
When a computer joins a domain, a computer account is created. After it joins the domain,
the computer uses the password for that account to create a secure channel with the
domain controller for its domain every time that it restarts. Requests that are sent on the
secure channel are authenticated—and sensitive information such as passwords are
encrypted—but the channel is not integrity-checked, and not all information is encrypted.
If a computer is configured to always encrypt or sign secure channel data but the domain
controller cannot sign or encrypt any portion of the secure channel data, the computer and
domain controller cannot establish a secure channel. If the computer is configured to
encrypt or sign secure channel data when possible, a secure channel can be established, but
the level of encryption and signing is negotiated.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\System\CurrentControlSet\Services\Netlogon\Parameters:signsecurecha
nnel
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Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Enabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Local
Policies\Security Options\Domain member: Digitally sign secure channel data (when
possible)
Impact:
Digital encryption and signing of the secure channel is a good idea where it is supported.
The secure channel protects domain credentials as they are sent to the domain controller.
However, only Windows NT 4.0 with Service Pack 6a (SP6a) and subsequent versions of
the Windows operating system support digital encryption and signing of the secure
channel. Windows 98 Second Edition clients do not support it unless they have the Dsclient
installed. Therefore, you cannot enable the Domain member: Digitally encrypt or sign
secure channel data (always) setting on domain controllers that support Windows 98
clients as members of the domain. Potential impacts can include the following:
• The ability to create or delete trust relationships with clients running versions of
Windows earlier than Windows NT 4.0 with SP6a will be disabled.
• Logons from clients running versions of Windows earlier than Windows NT 4.0 with SP6a
will be disabled.
• The ability to authenticate other domains' users from a domain controller running a
version of Windows earlier than Windows NT 4.0 with SP6a in a trusted domain will be
disabled.
You can enable this policy setting after you eliminate all Windows 9x clients from the
domain and upgrade all Windows NT 4.0 servers and domain controllers from
trusted/trusting domains to Windows NT 4.0 with SP6a. You can enable the other two
policy settings, Domain member: Digitally encrypt secure channel data (when possible) and
Domain member: Digitally encrypt sign channel data (when possible), on all computers in
the domain that support them and clients running versions of Windows earlier than
Windows NT 4.0 with SP6a and applications that run on these versions of Windows will not
be affected.
Default Value:
Enabled
References:
1. CCE-37222-7
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2.3.6.4 (L1) Ensure 'Domain member: Disable machine account
password changes' is set to 'Disabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting determines whether a domain member can periodically change its
computer account password. If you enable this policy setting, the domain member will be
prevented from changing its computer account password. If you disable this policy setting,
the domain member can change its computer account password as specified by the Domain
Member: Maximum machine account password age setting, which by default is every 30
days. Computers that cannot automatically change their account passwords are potentially
vulnerable, because an attacker might be able to determine the password for the system's
domain account.
The recommended state for this setting is: Disabled.
Rationale:
The default configuration for Windows Server 2003based computers that belong to a
domain is that they are automatically required to change the passwords for their accounts
every 30 days. If you disable this policy setting, computers that run Windows Server 2003
will retain the same passwords as their computer accounts. Computers that are no longer
able to automatically change their account password are at risk from an attacker who could
determine the password for the computer's domain account.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\System\CurrentControlSet\Services\Netlogon\Parameters:disablepasswo
rdchange
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Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Disabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Local
Policies\Security Options\Domain member: Disable machine account password changes
Impact:
None. This is the default configuration.
Default Value:
Disabled
References:
1. CCE-37508-9
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2.3.6.5 (L1) Ensure 'Domain member: Maximum machine account
password age' is set to '30 or fewer days, but not 0' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting determines the maximum allowable age for a computer account
password. By default, domain members automatically change their domain passwords
every 30 days. If you increase this interval significantly so that the computers no longer
change their passwords, an attacker would have more time to undertake a brute force
attack against one of the computer accounts.
The recommended state for this setting is: 30 or fewer days, but not 0.
Note: A value of 0 does not conform to the benchmark as it disables maximum password
age.
Rationale:
In Active Directory-based domains, each computer has an account and password just like
every user. By default, the domain members automatically change their domain password
every 30 days. If you increase this interval significantly, or set it to 0 so that the computers
no longer change their passwords, an attacker will have more time to undertake a brute
force attack to guess the password of one or more computer accounts.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed.
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to 30 or
fewer days, but not 0:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Local
Policies\Security Options\Domain member: Maximum machine account password age
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Impact:
None. This is the default configuration.
Default Value:
30 days
References:
1. CCE-37431-4
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2.3.6.6 (L1) Ensure 'Domain member: Require strong (Windows 2000 or
later) session key' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
When this policy setting is enabled, a secure channel can only be established with domain
controllers that are capable of encrypting secure channel data with a strong (128-bit)
session key.
To enable this policy setting, all domain controllers in the domain must be able to encrypt
secure channel data with a strong key, which means all domain controllers must be running
Microsoft Windows 2000 or later. If communication to non-Windows 2000based domains
is required, it is recommended that you disable this policy setting.
The recommended state for this setting is: Enabled.
Rationale:
Session keys that are used to establish secure channel communications between domain
controllers and member computers are much stronger in Windows 2000 than they were in
previous Microsoft operating systems.
Whenever possible, you should take advantage of these stronger session keys to help
protect secure channel communications from attacks that attempt to hijack network
sessions and eavesdropping. (Eavesdropping is a form of hacking in which network data is
read or altered in transit. The data can be modified to hide or change the sender, or be
redirected.)
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\System\CurrentControlSet\Services\Netlogon\Parameters:requirestrong
key
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Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Enabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Local
Policies\Security Options\Domain member: Require strong (Windows 2000 or later)
session key
Impact:
Computers that have this policy setting enabled will not be able to join Windows NT 4.0
domains, and trusts between Active Directory domains and Windows NT-style domains
may not work properly. Also, computers that do not support this policy setting will not be
able to join domains in which the domain controllers have this policy setting enabled.
Default Value:
Disabled
References:
1. CCE-37614-5
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2.3.7 Interactive logon
This section contains recommendations related to interactive logons.
2.3.7.1 (L1) Ensure 'Interactive logon: Do not display last user name' is
set to 'Enabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting determines whether the account name of the last user to log on to the
client computers in your organization will be displayed in each computer's respective
Windows logon screen. Enable this policy setting to prevent intruders from collecting
account names visually from the screens of desktop or laptop computers in your
organization.
The recommended state for this setting is: Enabled.
Rationale:
An attacker with access to the console (for example, someone with physical access or
someone who is able to connect to the server through Terminal Services) could view the
name of the last user who logged on to the server. The attacker could then try to guess the
password, use a dictionary, or use a brute-force attack to try and log on.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Policies\System:DontDispl
ayLastUserName
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Enabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Local
Policies\Security Options\Interactive logon: Do not display last user name
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Impact:
Users will not see their user name or domain name when unlocking their computer, they
will have to enter that information.
Default Value:
Disabled
References:
1. CCE-36056-0
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2.3.7.2 (L1) Ensure 'Interactive logon: Do not require CTRL+ALT+DEL' is
set to 'Disabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting determines whether users must press CTRL+ALT+DEL before they log
on. If you enable this policy setting, users can log on without this key combination. If you
disable this policy setting, users must press CTRL+ALT+DEL before they log on to Windows
unless they use a smart card for Windows logon. A smart card is a tamper-proof device that
stores security information.
The recommended state for this setting is: Disabled.
Rationale:
Microsoft developed this feature to make it easier for users with certain types of physical
impairments to log on to computers that run Windows. If users are not required to press
CTRL+ALT+DEL, they are susceptible to attacks that attempt to intercept their passwords.
If CTRL+ALT+DEL is required before logon, user passwords are communicated by means of
a trusted path.
An attacker could install a Trojan horse program that looks like the standard Windows
logon dialog box and capture the user's password. The attacker would then be able to log
on to the compromised account with whatever level of privilege that user has.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Policies\System:DisableCA
D
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Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Disabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Local
Policies\Security Options\Interactive logon: Do not require CTRL+ALT+DEL
Impact:
Unless they use a smart card to log on, users will have to simultaneously press three keys
before the logon dialog box will display.
Default Value:
Disabled
References:
1. CCE-37637-6
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2.3.7.3 (L1) Ensure 'Interactive logon: Machine inactivity limit' is set to
'900 or fewer second(s), but not 0' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
Windows notices inactivity of a logon session, and if the amount of inactive time exceeds
the inactivity limit, then the screen saver will run, locking the session.
The recommended state for this setting is: 900 or fewer second(s), but not 0.
Note: A value of 0 does not conform to the benchmark as it disables the machine inactivity
limit.
Rationale:
If a user forgets to lock their computer when they walk away it's possible that a passerby
will hijack it.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Policies\System:Inactivit
yTimeoutSecs
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to 900 or
fewer seconds, but not 0:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Local
Policies\Security Options\Interactive logon: Machine inactivity limit
Impact:
The screen saver will automatically activate when the computer has been unattended for
the amount of time specified. The impact should be minimal since the screen saver is
enabled by default.
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Default Value:
Not defined
References:
1. CCE-38235-8
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2.3.7.4 (L1) Configure 'Interactive logon: Message text for users
attempting to log on' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting specifies a text message that displays to users when they log on.
Configure this setting in a manner that is consistent with the security and operational
requirements of your organization.
Rationale:
Displaying a warning message before logon may help prevent an attack by warning the
attacker about the consequences of their misconduct before it happens. It may also help to
reinforce corporate policy by notifying employees of the appropriate policy during the
logon process. This text is often used for legal reasons—for example, to warn users about
the ramifications of misusing company information or to warn them that their actions may
be audited.
Note: Any warning that you display should first be approved by your organization's legal
and human resources representatives.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Policies\System:LegalNoti
ceText
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, configure the following UI path to a
value that is consistent with the security and operational requirements of your
organization:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Local
Policies\Security Options\Interactive logon: Message text for users attempting to log
on
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Impact:
Users will see a message in a dialog box before they can log on to the server console.
Note: Windows Vista and Windows XP Professional support logon banners that can exceed
512 characters in length and that can also contain carriage-return line-feed sequences.
However, Windows 2000-based clients cannot interpret and display these messages. You
must use a Windows 2000-based computer to create a logon message policy that applies to
Windows 2000-based computers. If you inadvertently create a logon message policy on a
Windows Vista-based or Windows XP Professional-based computer and you discover that
it does not display properly on Windows 2000-based computers, do the following: Change
the setting to Not Defined, and then change the setting to the desired value by using a
Windows 2000-based computer.
Important: If you do not reconfigure this setting to Not Defined before reconfiguring the
setting using a Windows 2000-based computer, the changes will not take effect properly.
Default Value:
Not defined
References:
1. CCE-37226-8
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2.3.7.5 (L1) Configure 'Interactive logon: Message title for users
attempting to log on' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting specifies the text displayed in the title bar of the window that users see
when they log on to the system. Configure this setting in a manner that is consistent with
the security and operational requirements of your organization.
Rationale:
Displaying a warning message before logon may help prevent an attack by warning the
attacker about the consequences of their misconduct before it happens. It may also help to
reinforce corporate policy by notifying employees of the appropriate policy during the
logon process.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Policies\System:LegalNoti
ceCaption
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, configure the following UI path to a
value that is consistent with the security and operational requirements of your
organization:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Local
Policies\Security Options\Interactive logon: Message title for users attempting to log
on
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Impact:
Users will see a message in a dialog box before they can log on to the server console.
Note: Windows Vista and Windows XP Professional support logon banners that can exceed
512 characters in length and that can also contain carriage-return line-feed sequences.
However, Windows 2000-based clients cannot interpret and display these messages. You
must use a Windows 2000-based computer to create a logon message policy that applies to
Windows 2000-based computers. If you inadvertently create a logon message policy on a
Windows Vista-based or Windows XP Professional-based computer and you discover that
it does not display properly on Windows 2000-based computers, do the following: Change
the setting to Not Defined, and then change the setting to the desired value by using a
Windows 2000-based computer.
Important: If you do not reconfigure this setting to Not Defined before reconfiguring the
setting using a Windows 2000-based computer, the changes will not take effect properly.
Default Value:
Not defined
References:
1. CCE-37512-1
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2.3.7.6 (L2) Ensure 'Interactive logon: Number of previous logons to
cache (in case domain controller is not available)' is set to '4 or fewer
logon(s)' (MS only) (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 2 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting determines whether a user can log on to a Windows domain using
cached account information. Logon information for domain accounts can be cached locally
to allow users to log on even if a domain controller cannot be contacted. This policy setting
determines the number of unique users for whom logon information is cached locally. If
this value is set to 0, the logon cache feature is disabled. An attacker who is able to access
the file system of the server could locate this cached information and use a brute force
attack to determine user passwords.
The recommended state for this setting is: 4 or fewer logon(s).
Rationale:
The number that is assigned to this policy setting indicates the number of users whose
logon information the servers will cache locally. If the number is set to 10, then the server
caches logon information for 10 users. When an eleventh user logs on to the computer, the
server overwrites the oldest cached logon session.
Users who access the server console will have their logon credentials cached on that server.
An attacker who is able to access the file system of the server could locate this cached
information and use a brute force attack to attempt to determine user passwords.
To mitigate this type of attack, Windows encrypts the information and obscures its physical
location.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Microsoft\Windows
NT\CurrentVersion\Winlogon:cachedlogonscount
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Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to 4 or
fewer logon(s):
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Local
Policies\Security Options\Interactive logon: Number of previous logons to cache (in
case domain controller is not available)
Impact:
Users will be unable to log on to any computers if there is no domain controller available to
authenticate them. Organizations may want to configure this value to 2 for end-user
computers, especially for mobile users. A configuration value of 2 means that the user's
logon information will still be in the cache, even if a member of the IT department has
recently logged on to their computer to perform system maintenance. This method allows
users to log on to their computers when they are not connected to the organization's
network.
Default Value:
10 logons
References:
1. CCE-37439-7
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2.3.7.7 (L1) Ensure 'Interactive logon: Prompt user to change password
before expiration' is set to 'between 5 and 14 days' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting determines how far in advance users are warned that their password
will expire. It is recommended that you configure this policy setting to at least 5 days but
no more than 14 days to sufficiently warn users when their passwords will expire.
The recommended state for this setting is: between 5 and 14 days.
Rationale:
It is recommended that user passwords be configured to expire periodically. Users will
need to be warned that their passwords are going to expire, or they may inadvertently be
locked out of the computer when their passwords expire. This condition could lead to
confusion for users who access the network locally, or make it impossible for users to
access your organization's network through dial-up or virtual private network (VPN)
connections.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Microsoft\Windows
NT\CurrentVersion\Winlogon:passwordexpirywarning
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to a
value between 5 and 14 days:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Local
Policies\Security Options\Interactive logon: Prompt user to change password before
expiration
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Impact:
Users will see a dialog box prompt to change their password each time that they log on to
the domain when their password is configured to expire between 5 and 14 days.
Default Value:
14 days
References:
1. CCE-37622-8
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2.3.7.8 (L1) Ensure 'Interactive logon: Require Domain Controller
Authentication to unlock workstation' is set to 'Enabled' (MS only)
(Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
Logon information is required to unlock a locked computer. For domain accounts, the
Interactive logon: Require Domain Controller authentication to unlock workstation setting
determines whether it is necessary to contact a domain controller to unlock a computer. If
you enable this setting, a domain controller must authenticate the domain account that is
being used to unlock the computer. If you disable this setting, logon information
confirmation with a domain controller is not required for a user to unlock the computer.
However, if you configure the Interactive logon: Number of previous logons to cache (in
case domain controller is not available) setting to a value that is greater than zero, then the
user's cached credentials will be used to unlock the computer.
The recommended state for this setting is: Enabled.
Rationale:
By default, the computer caches in memory the credentials of any users who are
authenticated locally. The computer uses these cached credentials to authenticate anyone
who attempts to unlock the console. When cached credentials are used, any changes that
have recently been made to the account—such as user rights assignments, account lockout,
or the account being disabled—are not considered or applied after the account is
authenticated. User privileges are not updated, and (more importantly) disabled accounts
are still able to unlock the console of the computer.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Microsoft\Windows
NT\CurrentVersion\Winlogon:ForceUnlockLogon
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Remediation:
To implement the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path
to Enabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Local
Policies\Security Options\Interactive logon: Require Domain Controller Authentication
to unlock workstation
Impact:
When the console on a computer is locked, either by a user or automatically by a screen
saver time-out, the console can only be unlocked if the user is able to re-authenticate to the
domain controller. If no domain controller is available, then users cannot unlock their
workstations. If you configure the Interactive logon: Number of previous logons to cache
(in case domain controller is not available) setting to 0, users whose domain controllers are
unavailable (such as mobile or remote users) will not be able to log on.
Default Value:
Not Configured
References:
1. CCE-38240-8
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2.3.7.9 (L1) Ensure 'Interactive logon: Smart card removal behavior' is
set to 'Lock Workstation' or higher (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting determines what happens when the smart card for a logged-on user is
removed from the smart card reader.
The recommended state for this setting is: Lock Workstation. Configuring this setting to
Force Logoff or Disconnect if a Remote Desktop Services session also conforms
with the benchmark.
Rationale:
Users sometimes forget to lock their workstations when they are away from them, allowing
the possibility for malicious users to access their computers. If smart cards are used for
authentication, the computer should automatically lock itself when the card is removed to
ensure that only the user with the smart card is accessing resources using those
credentials.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed, noting that values of Force Logoff or Disconnect if a Remote Desktop
Services session are also acceptable settings. This group policy setting is backed by the
following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Microsoft\Windows
NT\CurrentVersion\Winlogon:scremoveoption
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Lock
Workstation (or, if applicable for your environment, Force Logoff or Disconnect if a
Remote Desktop Services session):
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Local
Policies\Security Options\Interactive logon: Smart card removal behavior
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Impact:
If you select Force Logoff, users will have to re-insert their smart cards and re-enter their
PINs when they return to their workstations. Enforcing this setting on computers used by
people who must log onto multiple computers in order to perform their duties could be
frustrating and lower productivity. For example, if network administrators are limited to a
single account but need to log into several computers simultaneously in order to effectively
manage the network enforcing this setting will limit them to logging onto one computer at
a time. For these reasons it is recommended that this setting only be enforced on
workstations used for purposes commonly associated with typical users such as document
creation and email.
Default Value:
No Action
References:
1. CCE-38333-1
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2.3.8 Microsoft network client
This section contains recommendations related to configuring the Microsoft network client.
2.3.8.1 (L1) Ensure 'Microsoft network client: Digitally sign
communications (always)' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting determines whether packet signing is required by the SMB client
component. If you enable this policy setting, the Microsoft network client computer cannot
communicate with a Microsoft network server unless that server agrees to sign SMB
packets. In mixed environments with legacy client computers, set this option to Disabled
because these computers will not be able to authenticate or gain access to domain
controllers. However, you can use this policy setting in Windows 2000 or later
environments.
Note: When Windows Vista-based computers have this policy setting enabled and they
connect to file or print shares on remote servers, it is important that the setting is
synchronized with its companion setting, Microsoft network server: Digitally sign
communications (always), on those servers. For more information about these settings,
see the "Microsoft network client and server: Digitally sign communications (four related
settings)" section in Chapter 5 of the Threats and Countermeasures guide.
The recommended state for this setting is: Enabled.
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Rationale:
Session hijacking uses tools that allow attackers who have access to the same network as
the client or server to interrupt, end, or steal a session in progress. Attackers can
potentially intercept and modify unsigned SMB packets and then modify the traffic and
forward it so that the server might perform undesirable actions. Alternatively, the attacker
could pose as the server or client after legitimate authentication and gain unauthorized
access to data.
SMB is the resource sharing protocol that is supported by many Windows operating
systems. It is the basis of NetBIOS and many other protocols. SMB signatures authenticate
both users and the servers that host the data. If either side fails the authentication process,
data transmission will not take place.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\System\CurrentControlSet\Services\LanmanWorkstation\Parameters:Requ
ireSecuritySignature
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Enabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Local
Policies\Security Options\Microsoft network client: Digitally sign communications
(always)
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Impact:
The Windows 2000 Server, Windows 2000 Professional, Windows Server 2003, Windows
XP Professional and Windows Vista implementations of the SMB file and print sharing
protocol support mutual authentication, which prevents session hijacking attacks and
supports message authentication to prevent man-in-the-middle attacks. SMB signing
provides this authentication by placing a digital signature into each SMB, which is then
verified by both the client and the server.
Implementation of SMB signing may negatively affect performance, because each packet
needs to be signed and verified. If these settings are enabled on a server that is performing
multiple roles, such as a small business server that is serving as a domain controller, file
server, print server, and application server performance may be substantially slowed.
Additionally, if you configure computers to ignore all unsigned SMB communications, older
applications and operating systems will not be able to connect. However, if you completely
disable all SMB signing, computers will be vulnerable to session hijacking attacks.
When SMB signing policies are enabled on domain controllers running Windows Server
2003 and member computers running Windows Vista SP1 or Windows Server 2008 group
policy processing will fail. A hotfix is available from Microsoft that resolves this issue; see
Microsoft Knowledge Base article 950876 for more details: Group Policy settings are not
applied on member computers that are running Windows Server 2008 or Windows Vista
SP1 when certain SMB signing policies are enabled.
Default Value:
Disabled
References:
1. CCE-36325-9
182 | P a g e
2.3.8.2 (L1) Ensure 'Microsoft network client: Digitally sign
communications (if server agrees)' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting determines whether the SMB client will attempt to negotiate SMB packet
signing. The implementation of digital signing in Windows-based networks helps to
prevent sessions from being hijacked. If you enable this policy setting, the Microsoft
network client will use signing only if the server with which it communicates accepts
digitally signed communication.
Note: Enabling this policy setting on SMB clients on your network makes them fully
effective for packet signing with all clients and servers in your environment.
The recommended state for this setting is: Enabled.
Rationale:
Session hijacking uses tools that allow attackers who have access to the same network as
the client or server to interrupt, end, or steal a session in progress. Attackers can
potentially intercept and modify unsigned SMB packets and then modify the traffic and
forward it so that the server might perform undesirable actions. Alternatively, the attacker
could pose as the server or client after legitimate authentication and gain unauthorized
access to data.
SMB is the resource sharing protocol that is supported by many Windows operating
systems. It is the basis of NetBIOS and many other protocols. SMB signatures authenticate
both users and the servers that host the data. If either side fails the authentication process,
data transmission will not take place.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\System\CurrentControlSet\Services\LanmanWorkstation\Parameters:Enab
leSecuritySignature
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Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Enabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Local
Policies\Security Options\Microsoft network client: Digitally sign communications (if
server agrees)
Impact:
The Windows 2000 Server, Windows 2000 Professional, Windows Server 2003, Windows
XP Professional and Windows Vista implementations of the SMB file and print sharing
protocol support mutual authentication, which prevents session hijacking attacks and
supports message authentication to prevent man-in-the-middle attacks. SMB signing
provides this authentication by placing a digital signature into each SMB, which is then
verified by both the client and the server.
Implementation of SMB signing may negatively affect performance, because each packet
needs to be signed and verified. If these settings are enabled on a server that is performing
multiple roles, such as a small business server that is serving as a domain controller, file
server, print server, and application server performance may be substantially slowed.
Additionally, if you configure computers to ignore all unsigned SMB communications, older
applications and operating systems will not be able to connect. However, if you completely
disable all SMB signing, computers will be vulnerable to session hijacking attacks.
When SMB signing policies are enabled on domain controllers running Windows Server
2003 and member computers running Windows Vista SP1 or Windows Server 2008 group
policy processing will fail. A hotfix is available from Microsoft that resolves this issue; see
Microsoft Knowledge Base article 950876 for more details: Group Policy settings are not
applied on member computers that are running Windows Server 2008 or Windows Vista
SP1 when certain SMB signing policies are enabled.
Default Value:
Enabled
References:
1. CCE-36269-9
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2.3.8.3 (L1) Ensure 'Microsoft network client: Send unencrypted
password to third-party SMB servers' is set to 'Disabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
Disable this policy setting to prevent the SMB redirector from sending plaintext passwords
during authentication to third-party SMB servers that do not support password encryption.
It is recommended that you disable this policy setting unless there is a strong business case
to enable it. If this policy setting is enabled, unencrypted passwords will be allowed across
the network.
The recommended state for this setting is: Disabled.
Rationale:
If you enable this policy setting, the server can transmit passwords in plaintext across the
network to other computers that offer SMB services. These other computers may not use
any of the SMB security mechanisms that are included with Windows Server 2003.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\System\CurrentControlSet\Services\LanmanWorkstation\Parameters:Enab
lePlainTextPassword
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Disabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Local
Policies\Security Options\Microsoft network client: Send unencrypted password to
third-party SMB servers
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Impact:
Some very old applications and operating systems such as MS-DOS, Windows for
Workgroups 3.11, and Windows 95a may not be able to communicate with the servers in
your organization by means of the SMB protocol.
Default Value:
Disabled
References:
1. CCE-37863-8
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2.3.9 Microsoft network server
This section contains recommendations related to configuring the Microsoft network
server.
2.3.9.1 (L1) Ensure 'Microsoft network server: Amount of idle time
required before suspending session' is set to '15 or fewer minute(s), but
not 0' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting allows you to specify the amount of continuous idle time that must pass
in an SMB session before the session is suspended because of inactivity. Administrators can
use this policy setting to control when a computer suspends an inactive SMB session. If
client activity resumes, the session is automatically reestablished.
A value of 0 appears to allow sessions to persist indefinitely. The maximum value is 99999,
which is over 69 days; in effect, this value disables the setting.
The recommended state for this setting is: 15 or fewer minute(s), but not 0.
Rationale:
Each SMB session consumes server resources, and numerous null sessions will slow the
server or possibly cause it to fail. An attacker could repeatedly establish SMB sessions until
the server's SMB services become slow or unresponsive.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\System\CurrentControlSet\Services\LanManServer\Parameters:autodisco
nnect
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Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to 15 or
fewer minute(s), but not 0:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Local
Policies\Security Options\Microsoft network server: Amount of idle time required
before suspending session
Impact:
There will be little impact because SMB sessions will be re-established automatically if the
client resumes activity.
Default Value:
15 minutes
References:
1. CCE-38046-9
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2.3.9.2 (L1) Ensure 'Microsoft network server: Digitally sign
communications (always)' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting determines if the server side SMB service is required to perform SMB
packet signing. Enable this policy setting in a mixed environment to prevent downstream
clients from using the workstation as a network server.
The recommended state for this setting is: Enabled.
Rationale:
Session hijacking uses tools that allow attackers who have access to the same network as
the client or server to interrupt, end, or steal a session in progress. Attackers can
potentially intercept and modify unsigned SMB packets and then modify the traffic and
forward it so that the server might perform undesirable actions. Alternatively, the attacker
could pose as the server or client after legitimate authentication and gain unauthorized
access to data.
SMB is the resource sharing protocol that is supported by many Windows operating
systems. It is the basis of NetBIOS and many other protocols. SMB signatures authenticate
both users and the servers that host the data. If either side fails the authentication process,
data transmission will not take place.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\System\CurrentControlSet\Services\LanManServer\Parameters:requirese
curitysignature
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Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Enabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Local
Policies\Security Options\Microsoft network server: Digitally sign communications
(always)
Impact:
The Windows 2000 Server, Windows 2000 Professional, Windows Server 2003, Windows
XP Professional and Windows Vista implementations of the SMB file and print sharing
protocol support mutual authentication, which prevents session hijacking attacks and
supports message authentication to prevent man-in-the-middle attacks. SMB signing
provides this authentication by placing a digital signature into each SMB, which is then
verified by both the client and the server.
Implementation of SMB signing may negatively affect performance, because each packet
needs to be signed and verified. If these settings are enabled on a server that is performing
multiple roles, such as a small business server that is serving as a domain controller, file
server, print server, and application server performance may be substantially slowed.
Additionally, if you configure computers to ignore all unsigned SMB communications, older
applications and operating systems will not be able to connect. However, if you completely
disable all SMB signing, computers will be vulnerable to session hijacking attacks.
When SMB signing policies are enabled on domain controllers running Windows Server
2003 and member computers running Windows Vista SP1 or Windows Server 2008 group
policy processing will fail. A hotfix is available from Microsoft that resolves this issue; see
Microsoft Knowledge Base article 950876 for more details: Group Policy settings are not
applied on member computers that are running Windows Server 2008 or Windows Vista
SP1 when certain SMB signing policies are enabled.
Default Value:
Disabled
References:
1. CCE-37864-6
190 | P a g e
2.3.9.3 (L1) Ensure 'Microsoft network server: Digitally sign
communications (if client agrees)' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting determines if the server side SMB service is able to sign SMB packets if it
is requested to do so by a client that attempts to establish a connection. If no signing
request comes from the client, a connection will be allowed without a signature if the
Microsoft network server: Digitally sign communications (always) setting is not
enabled.
Note: Enable this policy setting on SMB clients on your network to make them fully
effective for packet signing with all clients and servers in your environment.
The recommended state for this setting is: Enabled.
Rationale:
Session hijacking uses tools that allow attackers who have access to the same network as
the client or server to interrupt, end, or steal a session in progress. Attackers can
potentially intercept and modify unsigned SMB packets and then modify the traffic and
forward it so that the server might perform undesirable actions. Alternatively, the attacker
could pose as the server or client after legitimate authentication and gain unauthorized
access to data.
SMB is the resource sharing protocol that is supported by many Windows operating
systems. It is the basis of NetBIOS and many other protocols. SMB signatures authenticate
both users and the servers that host the data. If either side fails the authentication process,
data transmission will not take place.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\System\CurrentControlSet\Services\LanManServer\Parameters:enablesec
uritysignature
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Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Enabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Local
Policies\Security Options\Microsoft network server: Digitally sign communications (if
client agrees)
Impact:
The Windows 2000 Server, Windows 2000 Professional, Windows Server 2003, Windows
XP Professional and Windows Vista implementations of the SMB file and print sharing
protocol support mutual authentication, which prevents session hijacking attacks and
supports message authentication to prevent man-in-the-middle attacks. SMB signing
provides this authentication by placing a digital signature into each SMB, which is then
verified by both the client and the server.
Implementation of SMB signing may negatively affect performance, because each packet
needs to be signed and verified. If these settings are enabled on a server that is performing
multiple roles, such as a small business server that is serving as a domain controller, file
server, print server, and application server performance may be substantially slowed.
Additionally, if you configure computers to ignore all unsigned SMB communications, older
applications and operating systems will not be able to connect. However, if you completely
disable all SMB signing, computers will be vulnerable to session hijacking attacks.
When SMB signing policies are enabled on domain controllers running Windows Server
2003 and member computers running Windows Vista SP1 or Windows Server 2008 group
policy processing will fail. A hotfix is available from Microsoft that resolves this issue; see
Microsoft Knowledge Base article 950876 for more details: Group Policy settings are not
applied on member computers that are running Windows Server 2008 or Windows Vista
SP1 when certain SMB signing policies are enabled.
Default Value:
Disabled
References:
1. CCE-35988-5
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2.3.9.4 (L1) Ensure 'Microsoft network server: Disconnect clients when
logon hours expire' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting determines whether to disconnect users who are connected to the local
computer outside their user account's valid logon hours. It affects the SMB component. If
you enable this policy setting, client sessions with the SMB service will be forcibly
disconnected when the client's logon hours expire. If you disable this policy setting,
established client sessions will be maintained after the client's logon hours expire. If you
enable this policy setting you should also enable Network security: Force logoff when
logon hours expire.
If your organization configures logon hours for users, this policy setting is necessary to
ensure they are effective.
The recommended state for this setting is: Enabled.
Rationale:
If your organization configures logon hours for users, then it makes sense to enable this
policy setting. Otherwise, users who should not have access to network resources outside
of their logon hours may actually be able to continue to use those resources with sessions
that were established during allowed hours.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\System\CurrentControlSet\Services\LanManServer\Parameters:enablefor
cedlogoff
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Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Enabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Local
Policies\Security Options\Microsoft network server: Disconnect clients when logon
hours expire
Impact:
If logon hours are not used in your organization, this policy setting will have no impact. If
logon hours are used, existing user sessions will be forcibly terminated when their logon
hours expire.
Default Value:
Enabled
References:
1. CCE-37972-7
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2.3.9.5 (L1) Ensure 'Microsoft network server: Server SPN target name
validation level' is set to 'Accept if provided by client' or higher (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting controls the level of validation a computer with shared folders or
printers (the server) performs on the service principal name (SPN) that is provided by the
client computer when it establishes a session using the server message block (SMB)
protocol.
The server message block (SMB) protocol provides the basis for file and print sharing and
other networking operations, such as remote Windows administration. The SMB protocol
supports validating the SMB server service principal name (SPN) within the authentication
blob provided by a SMB client to prevent a class of attacks against SMB servers referred to
as SMB relay attacks. This setting will affect both SMB1 and SMB2.
This security setting determines the level of validation a SMB server performs on the
service principal name (SPN) provided by the SMB client when trying to establish a session
to an SMB server.
The recommended state for this setting is: Accept if provided by client. Configuring
this setting to Required from client also conforms with the benchmark.
Rationale:
The identity of a computer can be spoofed to gain unauthorized access to network
resources.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\System\CurrentControlSet\Services\LanManServer\Parameters:SMBServer
NameHardeningLevel
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Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Accept if
provided by client (configuring to Required from client also conforms with the
benchmark):
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Local
Policies\Security Options\Microsoft network server: Server SPN target name validation
level
Impact:
All Windows operating systems support both a client-side SMB component and a serverside SMB component. This setting affects the server SMB behavior, and its implementation
should be carefully evaluated and tested to prevent disruptions to file and print serving
capabilities.
Default Value:
Not defined
References:
1. CCE-36170-9
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2.3.10 Network access
This section contains recommendations related to network access.
2.3.10.1 (L1) Ensure 'Network access: Allow anonymous SID/Name
translation' is set to 'Disabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting determines whether an anonymous user can request security identifier
(SID) attributes for another user, or use a SID to obtain its corresponding user name.
Disable this policy setting to prevent unauthenticated users from obtaining user names that
are associated with their respective SIDs.
The recommended state for this setting is: Disabled.
Rationale:
If this policy setting is enabled, a user with local access could use the well-known
Administrator's SID to learn the real name of the built-in Administrator account, even if it
has been renamed. That person could then use the account name to initiate a password
guessing attack.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed.
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Disabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Local
Policies\Security Options\Network access: Allow anonymous SID/Name translation
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Impact:
Disabled is the default configuration for this policy setting on member computers;
therefore it will have no impact on them. The default configuration for domain controllers
is Enabled. If you disable this policy setting on domain controllers, legacy computers may
be unable to communicate with Windows Server 2003-based domains. For example, the
following computers may not work:



Windows NT 4.0-based Remote Access Service servers.
Microsoft SQL Servers™ that run on Windows NT 3.x-based or Windows NT 4.0based computers.
Remote Access Service or Microsoft SQL servers that run on Windows 2000-based
computers and are located in Windows NT 3.x domains or Windows NT 4.0
domains.
Default Value:
Disabled
References:
1. CCE-36065-1
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2.3.10.2 (L1) Ensure 'Network access: Do not allow anonymous
enumeration of SAM accounts' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting controls the ability of anonymous users to enumerate the accounts in
the Security Accounts Manager (SAM). If you enable this policy setting, users with
anonymous connections cannot enumerate domain account user names on the
workstations in your environment. This policy setting also allows additional restrictions on
anonymous connections.
The recommended state for this setting is: Enabled.
Rationale:
An unauthorized user could anonymously list account names and use the information to
perform social engineering attacks or attempt to guess passwords. (Social engineering
attacks try to deceive users in some way to obtain passwords or some form of security
information.)
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\System\CurrentControlSet\Control\Lsa:RestrictAnonymousSAM
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Enabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Local
Policies\Security Options\Network access: Do not allow anonymous enumeration of SAM
accounts
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Impact:
It will be impossible to establish trusts with Windows NT 4.0-based domains. Also, client
computers that run older versions of the Windows operating system such as Windows NT
3.51 and Windows 95 will experience problems when they try to use resources on the
server.
Default Value:
Enabled
References:
1. CCE-36316-8
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2.3.10.3 (L1) Ensure 'Network access: Do not allow anonymous
enumeration of SAM accounts and shares' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting controls the ability of anonymous users to enumerate SAM accounts as
well as shares. If you enable this policy setting, anonymous users will not be able to
enumerate domain account user names and network share names on the workstations in
your environment.
The Network access: Do not allow anonymous enumeration of SAM accounts and shares
setting is configured to Enabled for the two environments that are discussed in this guide.
The recommended state for this setting is: Enabled.
Rationale:
An unauthorized user could anonymously list account names and shared resources and use
the information to attempt to guess passwords or perform social engineering attacks.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\System\CurrentControlSet\Control\Lsa:RestrictAnonymous
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Enabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Local
Policies\Security Options\Network access: Do not allow anonymous enumeration of SAM
accounts and shares
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Impact:
It will be impossible to grant access to users of another domain across a one-way trust
because administrators in the trusting domain will be unable to enumerate lists of accounts
in the other domain. Users who access file and print servers anonymously will be unable to
list the shared network resources on those servers; the users will have to authenticate
before they can view the lists of shared folders and printers.
Default Value:
Disabled
References:
1. CCE-36077-6
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2.3.10.4 (L2) Ensure 'Network access: Do not allow storage of
passwords and credentials for network authentication' is set to
'Enabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 2 - Domain Controller
 Level 2 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting determines whether the Stored User Names and Passwords feature may
save passwords or credentials for later use when it gains domain authentication. If you
enable this policy setting, the Stored User Names and Passwords feature of Windows does
not store passwords and credentials.
The recommended state for this setting is: Enabled.
Rationale:
Passwords that are cached can be accessed by the user when logged on to the computer.
Although this information may sound obvious, a problem can arise if the user unknowingly
executes hostile code that reads the passwords and forwards them to another,
unauthorized user.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\System\CurrentControlSet\Control\Lsa:disabledomaincreds
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Enabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Local
Policies\Security Options\Network access: Do not allow storage of passwords and
credentials for network authentication
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Impact:
Users will be forced to enter passwords whenever they log on to their Passport account or
other network resources that aren't accessible to their domain account. Testing has shown
that clients running Windows Vista or Windows Server 2008 will be unable to connect to
Distributed File System (DFS) shares in untrusted domains. Enabling this setting also
makes it impossible to specify alternate credentials for scheduled tasks, this can cause a
variety of problems. For example, some third party backup products will no longer work.
This policy setting should have no impact on users who access network resources that are
configured to allow access with their Active Directory-based domain account.
Default Value:
Not Configured
References:
1. CCE-38119-4
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2.3.10.5 (L1) Ensure 'Network access: Let Everyone permissions apply to
anonymous users' is set to 'Disabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting determines what additional permissions are assigned for anonymous
connections to the computer. If you enable this policy setting, anonymous Windows users
are allowed to perform certain activities, such as enumerate the names of domain accounts
and network shares. An unauthorized user could anonymously list account names and
shared resources and use the information to guess passwords or perform social
engineering attacks.
The recommended state for this setting is: Disabled.
Rationale:
An unauthorized user could anonymously list account names and shared resources and use
the information to attempt to guess passwords, perform social engineering attacks, or
launch DoS attacks.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\System\CurrentControlSet\Control\Lsa:EveryoneIncludesAnonymous
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Disabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Local
Policies\Security Options\Network access: Let Everyone permissions apply to anonymous
users
Impact:
None. This is the default configuration.
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Default Value:
Disabled
References:
1. CCE-36148-5
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2.3.10.6 (L1) Configure 'Network access: Named Pipes that can be
accessed anonymously' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting determines which communication sessions, or pipes, will have attributes
and permissions that allow anonymous access.
The recommended state for this setting is:


Level 1 - Domain Controller. The recommended state for this setting is: LSARPC,
NETLOGON, SAMR and (when the legacy Computer Browser service is enabled)
BROWSER.
Level 1 - Member Server. The recommended state for this setting is: <blank> (i.e.
None), or (when the legacy Computer Browser service is enabled) BROWSER.
Note: A server that holds the Remote Desktop Services Role with Remote Desktop Licensing
Role Service will require a special exception to this recommendation, to allow the
HydraLSPipe and TermServLicensing Named Pipes to be accessed anonymously.
Rationale:
Limiting named pipes that can be accessed anonymously will reduce the attack surface of
the system.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Services\LanManServer\Parameters:NullSessi
onPipes
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, configure the following UI path:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Local
Policies\Security Options\Network access: Named Pipes that can be accessed anonymously
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Impact:
This configuration will disable null session access over named pipes, and applications that
rely on this feature or on unauthenticated access to named pipes will no longer function.
The BROWSER named pipe may need to be added to this list if the Computer Browser service
is needed for supporting legacy components. The Computer Browser service is disabled by
default.
Default Value:
None
References:
1. CCE-38258-0
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2.3.10.7 (L1) Ensure 'Network access: Remotely accessible registry
paths' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting determines which registry paths will be accessible after referencing the
WinReg key to determine access permissions to the paths.
Note: This setting does not exist in Windows XP. There was a setting with that name in
Windows XP, but it is called "Network access: Remotely accessible registry paths and subpaths" in Windows Server 2003, Windows Vista, and Windows Server 2008.
Note #2: When you configure this setting you specify a list of one or more objects. The
delimiter used when entering the list is a line feed or carriage return, that is, type the first
object on the list, press the Enter button, type the next object, press Enter again, etc. The
setting value is stored as a comma-delimited list in group policy security templates. It is
also rendered as a comma-delimited list in Group Policy Editor's display pane and the
Resultant Set of Policy console. It is recorded in the registry as a line-feed delimited list in a
REG_MULTI_SZ value.
The recommended state for this setting is:
System\CurrentControlSet\Control\ProductOptions
System\CurrentControlSet\Control\Server Applications
Software\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion
Rationale:
The registry is a database that contains computer configuration information, and much of
the information is sensitive. An attacker could use this information to facilitate
unauthorized activities. To reduce the risk of such an attack, suitable ACLs are assigned
throughout the registry to help protect it from access by unauthorized users.
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Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\System\CurrentControlSet\Control\SecurePipeServers\Winreg\AllowedEx
actPaths:Machine
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to:
System\CurrentControlSet\Control\ProductOptions
System\CurrentControlSet\Control\Server Applications
Software\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Local
Policies\Security Options\Network access: Remotely accessible registry paths
Impact:
Remote management tools such as the Microsoft Baseline Security Analyzer and Microsoft
Systems Management Server require remote access to the registry to properly monitor and
manage those computers. If you remove the default registry paths from the list of
accessible ones, such remote management tools could fail.
Note: If you want to allow remote access, you must also enable the Remote Registry
service.
Default Value:
System\CurrentControlSet\Control\ProductOptions
System\CurrentControlSet\Control\Server Applications
Software\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion
References:
1. CCE-37194-8
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2.3.10.8 (L1) Ensure 'Network access: Remotely accessible registry paths
and sub-paths' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting determines which registry paths and sub-paths will be accessible when
an application or process references the WinReg key to determine access permissions.
Note: In Windows XP this setting is called "Network access: Remotely accessible registry
paths," the setting with that same name in Windows Vista, Windows Server 2008, and
Windows Server 2003 does not exist in Windows XP.
Note #2: When you configure this setting you specify a list of one or more objects. The
delimiter used when entering the list is a line feed or carriage return, that is, type the first
object on the list, press the Enter button, type the next object, press Enter again, etc. The
setting value is stored as a comma-delimited list in group policy security templates. It is
also rendered as a comma-delimited list in Group Policy Editor's display pane and the
Resultant Set of Policy console. It is recorded in the registry as a line-feed delimited list in a
REG_MULTI_SZ value.
The recommended state for this setting is:
System\CurrentControlSet\Control\Print\Printers
System\CurrentControlSet\Services\Eventlog
Software\Microsoft\OLAP Server
Software\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\Print
Software\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\Windows
System\CurrentControlSet\Control\ContentIndex
System\CurrentControlSet\Control\Terminal Server
System\CurrentControlSet\Control\Terminal Server\UserConfig
System\CurrentControlSet\Control\Terminal Server\DefaultUserConfiguration
Software\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\Perflib
System\CurrentControlSet\Services\SysmonLog
The recommended state for servers that hold the Active Directory Certificate Services Role
with Certification Authority Role Service includes the above list and:
System\CurrentControlSet\Services\CertSvc
The recommended state for servers that have the WINS Server Feature installed includes
the above list and:
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System\CurrentControlSet\Services\WINS
Rationale:
The registry contains sensitive computer configuration information that could be used by
an attacker to facilitate unauthorized activities. The fact that the default ACLs assigned
throughout the registry are fairly restrictive and help to protect the registry from access by
unauthorized users reduces the risk of such an attack.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\System\CurrentControlSet\Control\SecurePipeServers\Winreg\AllowedPa
ths:Machine
Remediation:
To implement the recommended configuration state, set the following Group Policy setting
to:
System\CurrentControlSet\Control\Print\Printers
System\CurrentControlSet\Services\Eventlog
Software\Microsoft\OLAP Server
Software\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\Print
Software\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\Windows
System\CurrentControlSet\Control\ContentIndex
System\CurrentControlSet\Control\Terminal Server
System\CurrentControlSet\Control\Terminal Server\UserConfig
System\CurrentControlSet\Control\Terminal Server\DefaultUserConfiguration
Software\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\Perflib
System\CurrentControlSet\Services\SysmonLog
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Local
Policies\Security Options\Network access: Remotely accessible registry paths and subpaths
When a server holds the Active Directory Certificate Services Role with Certification
Authority Role Service, the above list should also
include: System\CurrentControlSet\Services\CertSvc.
When a server has the WINS Server Feature installed, the above list should also include:
System\CurrentControlSet\Services\WINS
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Impact:
Remote management tools such as the Microsoft Baseline Security Analyzer and Microsoft
Systems Management Server require remote access to the registry to properly monitor and
manage those computers. If you remove the default registry paths from the list of
accessible ones, such remote management tools could fail.
Note: If you want to allow remote access, you must also enable the Remote Registry
service.
Default Value:
System\CurrentControlSet\Control\Print\Printers
System\CurrentControlSet\Services\Eventlog
Software\Microsoft\OLAP Server
Software\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\Print
Software\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\Windows
System\CurrentControlSet\Control\ContentIndex
System\CurrentControlSet\Control\Terminal Server
System\CurrentControlSet\Control\Terminal Server\UserConfig
System\CurrentControlSet\Control\Terminal Server\DefaultUserConfiguration
Software\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\Perflib
System\CurrentControlSet\Services\SysmonLog
References:
1. CCE-36347-3
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2.3.10.9 (L1) Ensure 'Network access: Restrict anonymous access to
Named Pipes and Shares' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
When enabled, this policy setting restricts anonymous access to only those shares and
pipes that are named in the Network access: Named pipes that can be accessed
anonymously and Network access: Shares that can be accessed anonymously settings.
This policy setting controls null session access to shares on your computers by adding
RestrictNullSessAccess with the value 1 in the
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\System\CurrentControlSet\Services\LanManServer\Parameters
registry key. This registry value toggles null session shares on or off to control whether the
server service restricts unauthenticated clients' access to named resources.
The recommended state for this setting is: Enabled.
Rationale:
Null sessions are a weakness that can be exploited through shares (including the default
shares) on computers in your environment.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\System\CurrentControlSet\Services\LanManServer\Parameters:restrictn
ullsessaccess
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Enabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Local
Policies\Security Options\Network access: Restrict anonymous access to Named Pipes and
Shares
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Impact:
You can enable this policy setting to restrict null session access for unauthenticated users
to all server pipes and shared folders except those that are listed in the NullSessionPipes
and NullSessionShares entries.
If you choose to enable this setting and are supporting Windows NT 4.0 domains, you
should check if any of the named pipes are required to maintain trust relationships
between the domains, and then add the pipe to the Network access: Named pipes that
can be accessed anonymously list:
- COMNAP: SNA session access
- COMNODE: SNA session access
- SQL\QUERY: SQL instance access
- SPOOLSS: Spooler service
- LLSRPC: License Logging service
- NETLOGON: Net Logon service
- LSARPC: LSA access
- SAMR: Remote access to SAM objects
- BROWSER: Computer Browser service
Previous to the release of Windows Server 2003 with Service Pack 1 (SP1) these named
pipes were allowed anonymous access by default, but with the increased hardening in
Windows Server 2003 with SP1 these pipes must be explicitly added if needed.
Default Value:
Enabled
References:
1. CCE-36021-4
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2.3.10.10 (L1) Ensure 'Network access: Shares that can be accessed
anonymously' is set to 'None' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting determines which network shares can be accessed by anonymous users.
The default configuration for this policy setting has little effect because all users have to be
authenticated before they can access shared resources on the server.
The recommended state for this setting is: <blank> (i.e. None).
Rationale:
It is very dangerous to enable this setting. Any shares that are listed can be accessed by any
network user, which could lead to the exposure or corruption of sensitive data.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\System\CurrentControlSet\Services\LanManServer\Parameters:NullSessi
onShares
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to <blank>
(i.e. None):
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Local
Policies\Security Options\Network access: Shares that can be accessed anonymously
Impact:
There should be little impact because this is the default configuration. Only authenticated
users will have access to shared resources on the server.
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Default Value:
Not defined
References:
1. CCE-38095-6
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2.3.10.11 (L1) Ensure 'Network access: Sharing and security model for
local accounts' is set to 'Classic - local users authenticate as themselves'
(Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting determines how network logons that use local accounts are
authenticated. The Classic option allows precise control over access to resources, including
the ability to assign different types of access to different users for the same resource. The
Guest only option allows you to treat all users equally. In this context, all users authenticate
as Guest only to receive the same access level to a given resource.
The recommended state for this setting is: Classic - local users authenticate as
themselves.
Rationale:
With the Guest only model, any user who can authenticate to your computer over the
network does so with guest privileges, which probably means that they will not have write
access to shared resources on that computer. Although this restriction does increase
security, it makes it more difficult for authorized users to access shared resources on those
computers because ACLs on those resources must include access control entries (ACEs) for
the Guest account. With the Classic model, local accounts should be password protected.
Otherwise, if Guest access is enabled, anyone can use those user accounts to access shared
system resources.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\System\CurrentControlSet\Control\Lsa:ForceGuest
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Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Classic local users authenticate as themselves:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Local
Policies\Security Options\Network access: Sharing and security model for local
accounts
Impact:
None. This is the default configuration.
Default Value:
Classic - local users authenticate as themselves
References:
1. CCE-37623-6
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2.3.11 Network security
This section contains recommendations related to network security.
2.3.11.1 (L1) Ensure 'Network security: Allow Local System to use
computer identity for NTLM' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
When enabled, this policy setting causes Local System services that use Negotiate to use the
computer identity when NTLM authentication is selected by the negotiation. This policy is
supported on at least Windows 7 or Windows Server 2008 R2.
The recommended state for this setting is: Enabled.
Rationale:
When connecting to computers running versions of Windows earlier than Windows Vista
or Windows Server 2008, services running as Local System and using SPNEGO (Negotiate)
that revert to NTLM use the computer identity. In Windows 7, if you are connecting to a
computer running Windows Server 2008 or Windows Vista, then a system service uses
either the computer identity or a NULL session. When connecting with a NULL session, a
system-generated session key is created, which provides no protection but allows
applications to sign and encrypt data without errors. When connecting with the computer
identity, both signing and encryption is supported in order to provide data protection.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\System\CurrentControlSet\Control\Lsa:UseMachineId
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Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Enabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Local
Policies\Security Options\Network security: Allow Local System to use computer
identity for NTLM
Impact:
If you enable this policy setting, services running as Local System that use Negotiate will
use the computer identity. This might cause some authentication requests between
Windows operating systems to fail and log an error.
If you disable this policy setting, services running as Local System that use Negotiate when
reverting to NTLM authentication will authenticate anonymously. This was the behavior in
previous versions of Windows.
Default Value:
Not defined
References:
1. CCE-38341-4
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2.3.11.2 (L1) Ensure 'Network security: Allow LocalSystem NULL session
fallback' is set to 'Disabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
Allow NTLM to fall back to NULL session when used with LocalSystem. The default is TRUE
up to Windows Vista / Server 2008 and FALSE from Windows 7 / Server 2008 R2 and
beyond.
The recommended state for this setting is: Disabled.
Rationale:
NULL sessions are less secure because by definition they are unauthenticated.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\System\CurrentControlSet\Control\Lsa\MSV1_0:allownullsessionfallbac
k
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Disabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Local
Policies\Security Options\Network security: Allow LocalSystem NULL session fallback
Impact:
Any applications that require NULL sessions for LocalSystem will not work as designed.
Default Value:
Not defined
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References:
1. CCE-37035-3
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2.3.11.3 (L1) Ensure 'Network Security: Allow PKU2U authentication
requests to this computer to use online identities' is set to 'Disabled'
(Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This setting determines if online identities are able to authenticate to this computer.
Windows 7 and Windows Server 2008 R2 introduced an extension to the Negotiate
authentication package, Spnego.dll. In previous versions of Windows, Negotiate decides
whether to use Kerberos or NTLM for authentication. The extension SSP for Negotiate,
Negoexts, which is treated as an authentication protocol by Windows, supports Microsoft
SSPs including PKU2U.
When computers are configured to accept authentication requests by using online IDs,
Negoexts.dll calls the PKU2U SSP on the computer that is used to log on. The PKU2U SSP
obtains a local certificate and exchanges the policy between the peer computers. When
validated on the peer computer, the certificate within the metadata is sent to the logon peer
for validation and associates the user's certificate to a security token and the logon process
completes.
The recommended state for this setting is: Disabled.
Rationale:
The PKU2U protocol is a peer-to-peer authentication protocol, in most managed networks
authentication should be managed centrally.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\System\CurrentControlSet\Control\Lsa\pku2u:AllowOnlineID
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Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Disabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Local
Policies\Security Options\Network Security: Allow PKU2U authentication requests to
this computer to use online identities
Impact:
Disabling this setting will disallow the online identities to be able to authenticate to the
domain joined machine in Windows 7 and later.
Default Value:
This policy is turned off by default on domain joined machines.
References:
1. CCE-38047-7
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2.3.11.4 (L1) Ensure 'Network Security: Configure encryption types
allowed for Kerberos' is set to 'RC4_HMAC_MD5, AES128_HMAC_SHA1,
AES256_HMAC_SHA1, Future encryption types' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting allows you to set the encryption types that Kerberos is allowed to use.
This policy is supported on at least Windows 7 or Windows Server 2008 R2.
The recommended state for this setting is: RC4_HMAC_MD5, AES128_HMAC_SHA1,
AES256_HMAC_SHA1, Future encryption types.
Rationale:
The strength of each encryption algorithm varies from one to the next, choosing stronger
algorithms will reduce the risk of compromise however doing so may cause issues when
the computer attempts to authenticate with systems that do not support them.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Policies\System\Kerberos\
Parameters:SupportedEncryptionTypes
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to
RC4_HMAC_MD5, AES128_HMAC_SHA1, AES256_HMAC_SHA1, Future encryption types:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Local
Policies\Security Options\Network Security: Configure encryption types allowed for
Kerberos
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Impact:
If not selected, the encryption type will not be allowed. This setting may affect
compatibility with client computers or services and applications. Multiple selections are
permitted.
Default Value:
Not defined
References:
1. CCE-37755-6
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2.3.11.5 (L1) Ensure 'Network security: Do not store LAN Manager hash
value on next password change' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting determines whether the LAN Manager (LM) hash value for the new
password is stored when the password is changed. The LM hash is relatively weak and
prone to attack compared to the cryptographically stronger Microsoft Windows NT hash.
Note: Older operating systems and some third-party applications may fail when this policy
setting is enabled. Also, note that the password will need to be changed on all accounts
after you enable this setting to gain the proper benefit.
The recommended state for this setting is: Enabled.
Rationale:
The SAM file can be targeted by attackers who seek access to username and password
hashes. Such attacks use special tools to crack passwords, which can then be used to
impersonate users and gain access to resources on your network. These types of attacks
will not be prevented if you enable this policy setting, but it will be much more difficult for
these types of attacks to succeed.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\System\CurrentControlSet\Control\Lsa:NoLMHash
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Enabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Local
Policies\Security Options\Network security: Do not store LAN Manager hash value on
next password change
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Impact:
Earlier operating systems such as Windows 95, Windows 98, and Windows ME as well as
some third-party applications will fail.
Default Value:
Enabled
References:
1. CCE-36326-7
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2.3.11.6 (L1) Ensure 'Network security: Force logoff when logon hours
expire' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting, which determines whether to disconnect users who are connected to
the local computer outside their user account's valid logon hours, affects the SMB
component. If you enable this policy setting, client sessions with the SMB server will be
disconnected when the client's logon hours expire. If you disable this policy setting,
established client sessions will be maintained after the client's logon hours expire.
The recommended state for this setting is: Enabled.
Rationale:
If this setting is disabled, a user could remain connected to the computer outside of their
allotted logon hours.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\System\CurrentControlSet\Services\LanManServer\Parameters:EnableFor
cedLogOff
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Enabled.
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Local
Policies\Security Options\Network security: Force logoff when logon hours expire
Impact:
When a user's logon time expires, SMB sessions will terminate. The user will be unable to
log on to the computer until their next scheduled access time commences.
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Default Value:
Disabled
References:
1. CCE-36270-7
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2.3.11.7 (L1) Ensure 'Network security: LAN Manager authentication
level' is set to 'Send NTLMv2 response only. Refuse LM & NTLM' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
LAN Manager (LM) is a family of early Microsoft client/server software that allows users to
link personal computers together on a single network. Network capabilities include
transparent file and print sharing, user security features, and network administration tools.
In Active Directory domains, the Kerberos protocol is the default authentication protocol.
However, if the Kerberos protocol is not negotiated for some reason, Active Directory will
use LM, NTLM, or NTLMv2. LAN Manager authentication includes the LM, NTLM, and NTLM
version 2 (NTLMv2) variants, and is the protocol that is used to authenticate all Windows
clients when they perform the following operations:





Join a domain
Authenticate between Active Directory forests
Authenticate to down-level domains
Authenticate to computers that do not run Windows 2000, Windows Server 2003,
or Windows XP)
Authenticate to computers that are not in the domain
The possible values for the Network security: LAN Manager authentication level setting
are:







Send LM & NTLM responses
Send LM & NTLM — use NTLMv2 session security if negotiated
Send NTLM responses only
Send NTLMv2 responses only
Send NTLMv2 responses only\refuse LM
Send NTLMv2 responses only\refuse LM & NTLM
Not Defined
The Network security: LAN Manager authentication level setting determines which
challenge/response authentication protocol is used for network logons. This choice affects
the authentication protocol level that clients use, the session security level that the
computers negotiate, and the authentication level that servers accept as follows:
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












Send LM & NTLM responses. Clients use LM and NTLM authentication and never use
NTLMv2 session security. Domain controllers accept LM, NTLM, and NTLMv2
authentication.
Send LM & NTLM - use NTLMv2 session security if negotiated. Clients use LM and
NTLM authentication and use NTLMv2 session security if the server supports it.
Domain controllers accept LM, NTLM, and NTLMv2 authentication.
Send NTLM response only. Clients use NTLM authentication only and use NTLMv2
session security if the server supports it. Domain controllers accept LM, NTLM, and
NTLMv2 authentication.
Send NTLMv2 response only. Clients use NTLMv2 authentication only and use
NTLMv2 session security if the server supports it. Domain controllers accept LM,
NTLM, and NTLMv2 authentication.
Send NTLMv2 response only\refuse LM. Clients use NTLMv2 authentication only
and use NTLMv2 session security if the server supports it. Domain controllers
refuse LM (accept only NTLM and NTLMv2 authentication).
Send NTLMv2 response only\refuse LM & NTLM. Clients use NTLMv2
authentication only and use NTLMv2 session security if the server supports it.
Domain controllers refuse LM and NTLM (accept only NTLMv2 authentication).
These settings correspond to the levels discussed in other Microsoft documents as
follows:
Level 0 - Send LM and NTLM response; never use NTLMv2 session security. Clients
use LM and NTLM authentication, and never use NTLMv2 session security. Domain
controllers accept LM, NTLM, and NTLMv2 authentication.
Level 1 - Use NTLMv2 session security if negotiated. Clients use LM and NTLM
authentication, and use NTLMv2 session security if the server supports it. Domain
controllers accept LM, NTLM, and NTLMv2 authentication.
Level 2 - Send NTLM response only. Clients use only NTLM authentication, and use
NTLMv2 session security if the server supports it. Domain controllers accept LM,
NTLM, and NTLMv2 authentication.
Level 3 - Send NTLMv2 response only. Clients use NTLMv2 authentication, and use
NTLMv2 session security if the server supports it. Domain controllers accept LM,
NTLM, and NTLMv2 authentication.
Level 4 - Domain controllers refuse LM responses. Clients use NTLM authentication,
and use NTLMv2 session security if the server supports it. Domain controllers
refuse LM authentication, that is, they accept NTLM and NTLMv2.
Level 5 - Domain controllers refuse LM and NTLM responses (accept only NTLMv2).
Clients use NTLMv2 authentication, use and NTLMv2 session security if the server
supports it. Domain controllers refuse NTLM and LM authentication (they accept
only NTLMv2).
The recommended state for this setting is: Send NTLMv2 response only. Refuse LM &
NTLM.
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Rationale:
In Windows Vista, this setting is undefined. However, in Windows 2000, Windows Server
2003, and Windows XP clients are configured by default to send LM and NTLM
authentication responses (Windows 95-based and Windows 98-based clients only send
LM). The default setting on servers allows all clients to authenticate with servers and use
their resources. However, this means that LM responses—the weakest form of
authentication response—are sent over the network, and it is potentially possible for
attackers to sniff that traffic to more easily reproduce the user's password.
The Windows 95, Windows 98, and Windows NT operating systems cannot use the
Kerberos version 5 protocol for authentication. For this reason, in a Windows Server 2003
domain, these computers authenticate by default with both the LM and NTLM protocols for
network authentication. You can enforce a more secure authentication protocol for
Windows 95, Windows 98, and Windows NT by using NTLMv2. For the logon process,
NTLMv2 uses a secure channel to protect the authentication process. Even if you use
NTLMv2 for earlier clients and servers, Windows-based clients and servers that are
members of the domain will use the Kerberos authentication protocol to authenticate with
Windows Server 2003 domain controllers.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\System\CurrentControlSet\Control\Lsa:LmCompatibilityLevel
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to: Send
NTLMv2 response only. Refuse LM & NTLM:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Local
Policies\Security Options\Network security: LAN Manager authentication level
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Impact:
Clients that do not support NTLMv2 authentication will not be able to authenticate in the
domain and access domain resources by using LM and NTLM.
Note: For information about a hotfix to ensure that this setting works in networks that
include Windows NT 4.0-based computers along with Windows 2000, Windows XP, and
Windows Server 2003-based computers, see Microsoft Knowledge Base article 305379:
Authentication Problems in Windows 2000 with NTLM 2 Levels Above 2 in a Windows NT
4.0 Domain.
Default Value:
Send NTLMv2 response only
References:
1. CCE-36173-3
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2.3.11.8 (L1) Ensure 'Network security: LDAP client signing
requirements' is set to 'Negotiate signing' or higher (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting determines the level of data signing that is requested on behalf of clients
that issue LDAP BIND requests, as follows:
- None. The LDAP BIND request is issued with the caller-specified options.
- Negotiate signing. If Transport Layer Security/Secure Sockets Layer (TLS/SSL) has not
been started, the LDAP BIND request is initiated with the LDAP data signing option set in
addition to the caller-specified options. If TLS/SSL has been started, the LDAP BIND
request is initiated with the caller-specified options.
- Require signature. This level is the same as Negotiate signing. However, if the LDAP
server's intermediate saslBindInProgress response does not indicate that LDAP traffic
signing is required, the caller is told that the LDAP BIND command request failed.
Note: This policy setting does not have any impact on ldap_simple_bind or
ldap_simple_bind_s. No Microsoft LDAP clients that are included with Windows XP
Professional use ldap_simple_bind or ldap_simple_bind_s to communicate with a domain
controller.
The possible values for the Network security: LDAP client signing requirements setting are:
- None
- Negotiate signing
- Require signature
- Not Defined
The recommended state for this setting is: Negotiate signing. Configuring this setting to
Require signing also conforms with the benchmark.
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Rationale:
Unsigned network traffic is susceptible to man-in-the-middle attacks in which an intruder
captures the packets between the client and server, modifies them, and then forwards them
to the server. For an LDAP server, this susceptibility means that an attacker could cause a
server to make decisions that are based on false or altered data from the LDAP queries. To
lower this risk in your network, you can implement strong physical security measures to
protect the network infrastructure. Also, you can make all types of man-in-the-middle
attacks extremely difficult if you require digital signatures on all network packets by means
of IPsec authentication headers.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\System\CurrentControlSet\Services\LDAP:LDAPClientIntegrity
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Negotiate
signing (configuring to Require signing also conforms with the benchmark):
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Local
Policies\Security Options\Network security: LDAP client signing requirements
Impact:
If you configure the server to require LDAP signatures you must also configure the client. If
you do not configure the client it will not be able to communicate with the server, which
could cause many features to fail, including user authentication, Group Policy, and logon
scripts.
Default Value:
Negotiate signing
References:
1. CCE-36858-9
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2.3.11.9 (L1) Ensure 'Network security: Minimum session security for
NTLM SSP based (including secure RPC) clients' is set to 'Require
NTLMv2 session security, Require 128-bit encryption' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting determines which behaviors are allowed for applications using the
NTLM Security Support Provider (SSP). The SSP Interface (SSPI) is used by applications
that need authentication services. The setting does not modify how the authentication
sequence works but instead require certain behaviors in applications that use the SSPI.
The possible values for the Network security: Minimum session security for NTLM SSP
based (including secure RPC) clients setting are:
- Require message confidentiality. This option is only available in Windows XP and
Windows Server 2003, the connection will fail if encryption is not negotiated. Encryption
converts data into a form that is not readable until decrypted.
- Require message integrity. This option is only available in Windows XP and Windows
Server 2003, the connection will fail if message integrity is not negotiated. The integrity of
a message can be assessed through message signing. Message signing proves that the
message has not been tampered with; it attaches a cryptographic signature that identifies
the sender and is a numeric representation of the contents of the message.
- Require 128-bit encryption. The connection will fail if strong encryption (128-bit) is not
negotiated.
- Require NTLMv2 session security. The connection will fail if the NTLMv2 protocol is not
negotiated.
- Not Defined.
The recommended state for this setting is: Require NTLMv2 session security, Require
128-bit encryption.
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Rationale:
You can enable all of the options for this policy setting to help protect network traffic that
uses the NTLM Security Support Provider (NTLM SSP) from being exposed or tampered
with by an attacker who has gained access to the same network. In other words, these
options help protect against man-in-the-middle attacks.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\System\CurrentControlSet\Control\Lsa\MSV1_0:NTLMMinClientSec
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Require
NTLMv2 session security, Require 128-bit encryption:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Local
Policies\Security Options\Network security: Minimum session security for NTLM SSP
based (including secure RPC) clients
Impact:
Client applications that are enforcing these settings will be unable to communicate with
older servers that do not support them. This setting could impact Windows Clustering
when applied to servers running Windows Server 2003, see Microsoft Knowledge Base
articles 891597: How to apply more restrictive security settings on a Windows Server
2003-based cluster server and 890761: You receive an "Error 0x8007042b" error message
when you add or join a node to a cluster if you use NTLM version 2 in Windows Server
2003 for more information on possible issues and how to resolve them.
Default Value:
No minimum
References:
1. CCE-37553-5
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2.3.11.10 (L1) Ensure 'Network security: Minimum session security for
NTLM SSP based (including secure RPC) servers' is set to 'Require
NTLMv2 session security, Require 128-bit encryption' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting determines which behaviors are allowed for applications using the
NTLM Security Support Provider (SSP). The SSP Interface (SSPI) is used by applications
that need authentication services. The setting does not modify how the authentication
sequence works but instead require certain behaviors in applications that use the SSPI.
The possible values for the Network security: Minimum session security for NTLM SSP
based (including secure RPC) servers setting are:
- Require message confidentiality. This option is only available in Windows XP and
Windows Server 2003, the connection will fail if encryption is not negotiated. Encryption
converts data into a form that is not readable until decrypted.
- Require message integrity. This option is only available in Windows XP and Windows
Server 2003, the connection will fail if message integrity is not negotiated. The integrity of
a message can be assessed through message signing. Message signing proves that the
message has not been tampered with; it attaches a cryptographic signature that identifies
the sender and is a numeric representation of the contents of the message.
- Require 128-bit encryption. The connection will fail if strong encryption (128-bit) is not
negotiated.
- Require NTLMv2 session security. The connection will fail if the NTLMv2 protocol is not
negotiated.
- Not Defined.
The recommended state for this setting is: Require NTLMv2 session security, Require
128-bit encryption.
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Rationale:
You can enable all of the options for this policy setting to help protect network traffic that
uses the NTLM Security Support Provider (NTLM SSP) from being exposed or tampered
with by an attacker who has gained access to the same network. That is, these options help
protect against man-in-the-middle attacks.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\System\CurrentControlSet\Control\Lsa\MSV1_0:NTLMMinServerSec
Remediation:
To implement the recommended configuration state, set the following Group Policy setting
to Require NTLMv2 session security, Require 128-bit encryption:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Local
Policies\Security Options\Network security: Minimum session security for NTLM SSP
based (including secure RPC) servers
Impact:
Server applications that are enforcing these settings will be unable to communicate with
older servers that do not support them. This setting could impact Windows Clustering
when applied to servers running Windows Server 2003, see Microsoft Knowledge Base
articles 891597: How to apply more restrictive security settings on a Windows Server
2003-based cluster server and 890761: You receive an "Error 0x8007042b" error message
when you add or join a node to a cluster if you use NTLM version 2 in Windows Server
2003 for more information on possible issues and how to resolve them.
Default Value:
No minimum
References:
1. CCE-37835-6
2.3.12 Recovery console
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
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2.3.13 Shutdown
This section contains recommendations related to the Windows shutdown functionality.
2.3.13.1 (L1) Ensure 'Shutdown: Allow system to be shut down without
having to log on' is set to 'Disabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting determines whether a computer can be shut down when a user is not
logged on. If this policy setting is enabled, the shutdown command is available on the
Windows logon screen. It is recommended to disable this policy setting to restrict the
ability to shut down the computer to users with credentials on the system.
The recommended state for this setting is: Disabled.
Rationale:
Users who can access the console locally could shut down the computer.
Attackers could also walk to the local console and restart the server, which would cause a
temporary DoS condition. Attackers could also shut down the server and leave all of its
applications and services unavailable.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Policies\System:ShutdownW
ithoutLogon
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Disabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Local
Policies\Security Options\Shutdown: Allow system to be shut down without having to log
on
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Impact:
Operators will have to log on to servers to shut them down or restart them.
Default Value:
Disabled
References:
1. CCE-36788-8
2.3.14 System cryptography
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
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2.3.15 System objects
This section contains recommendations related to system objects.
2.3.15.1 (L1) Ensure 'System objects: Require case insensitivity for nonWindows subsystems' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting determines whether case insensitivity is enforced for all subsystems.
The Microsoft Win32' subsystem is case insensitive. However, the kernel supports case
sensitivity for other subsystems, such as the Portable Operating System Interface for UNIX
(POSIX). Because Windows is case insensitive (but the POSIX subsystem will support case
sensitivity), failure to enforce this policy setting makes it possible for a user of the POSIX
subsystem to create a file with the same name as another file by using mixed case to label
it. Such a situation can block access to these files by another user who uses typical Win32
tools, because only one of the files will be available.
The recommended state for this setting is: Enabled.
Rationale:
Because Windows is case-insensitive but the POSIX subsystem will support case sensitivity,
failure to enable this policy setting would make it possible for a user of that subsystem to
create a file with the same name as another file but with a different mix of upper and lower
case letters. Such a situation could potentially confuse users when they try to access such
files from normal Win32 tools because only one of the files will be available.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\System\CurrentControlSet\Control\Session
Manager\Kernel:ObCaseInsensitive
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Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Enabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Local
Policies\Security Options\System objects: Require case insensitivity for non-Windows
subsystems
Impact:
All subsystems will be forced to observe case insensitivity. This configuration may confuse
users who are familiar with any UNIX-based operating systems that is case-sensitive.
Default Value:
Enabled
References:
1. CCE-37885-1
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2.3.15.2 (L1) Ensure 'System objects: Strengthen default permissions of
internal system objects (e.g. Symbolic Links)' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting determines the strength of the default discretionary access control list
(DACL) for objects. The setting helps secure objects that can be located and shared among
processes and its default configuration strengthens the DACL, because it allows users who
are not administrators to read shared objects but does not allow them to modify any that
they did not create.
The recommended state for this setting is: Enabled.
Rationale:
This setting determines the strength of the default DACL for objects. Windows Server 2003
maintains a global list of shared computer resources so that objects can be located and
shared among processes. Each type of object is created with a default DACL that specifies
who can access the objects and with what permissions. If you enable this setting, the
default DACL is strengthened because non-administrator users are allowed to read shared
objects but not modify shared objects that they did not create.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\System\CurrentControlSet\Control\Session Manager:ProtectionMode
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Enabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Local
Policies\Security Options\System objects: Strengthen default permissions of internal
system objects (e.g. Symbolic Links)
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Impact:
None. This is the default configuration.
Default Value:
Enabled
References:
1. CCE-37644-2
2.3.16 System settings
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
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2.3.17 User Account Control
This section contains recommendations related to User Account Control.
2.3.17.1 (L1) Ensure 'User Account Control: Admin Approval Mode for
the Built-in Administrator account' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting controls the behavior of Admin Approval Mode for the built-in
Administrator account.
The options are:
- Enabled: The built-in Administrator account uses Admin Approval Mode. By default, any
operation that requires elevation of privilege will prompt the user to approve the
operation.
- Disabled: (Default) The built-in Administrator account runs all applications with full
administrative privilege.
The recommended state for this setting is: Enabled.
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Rationale:
One of the risks that the User Account Control feature introduced with Windows Vista is
trying to mitigate is that of malicious software running under elevated credentials without
the user or administrator being aware of its activity. An attack vector for these programs
was to discover the password of the account named "Administrator" because that user
account was created for all installations of Windows. To address this risk, in Windows Vista
the built-in Administrator account is disabled. In a default installation of a new computer,
accounts with administrative control over the computer are initially set up in one of two
ways:
- If the computer is not joined to a domain, the first user account you create has the
equivalent permissions as a local administrator.
- If the computer is joined to a domain, no local administrator accounts are created. The
Enterprise or Domain Administrator must log on to the computer and create one if a local
administrator account is warranted.
Once Windows Vista is installed, the built-in Administrator account may be enabled, but we
strongly recommend that this account remain disabled.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Policies\System:FilterAdm
inistratorToken
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Enabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Local
Policies\Security Options\User Account Control: Admin Approval Mode for the Built-in
Administrator account
Impact:
Users that log on using the local Administrator account will be prompted for consent
whenever a program requests an elevation in privilege.
Default Value:
Disabled
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References:
1. CCE-36494-3
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2.3.17.2 (L1) Ensure 'User Account Control: Allow UIAccess applications
to prompt for elevation without using the secure desktop' is set to
'Disabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting controls whether User Interface Accessibility (UIAccess or UIA)
programs can automatically disable the secure desktop for elevation prompts used by a
standard user.
- Enabled: UIA programs, including Windows Remote Assistance, automatically disable the
secure desktop for elevation prompts. If you do not disable the "User Account Control:
Switch to the secure desktop when prompting for elevation" policy setting, the prompts
appear on the interactive user's desktop instead of the secure desktop.
- Disabled: (Default) The secure desktop can be disabled only by the user of the interactive
desktop or by disabling the "User Account Control: Switch to the secure desktop when
prompting for elevation" policy setting.
The recommended state for this setting is: Disabled.
Rationale:
One of the risks that the UAC feature introduced with Windows Vista is trying to mitigate is
that of malicious software running under elevated credentials without the user or
administrator being aware of its activity. This setting allows the administrator to perform
operations that require elevated privileges while connected via Remote Assistance. This
increases security in that organizations can use UAC even when end user support is
provided remotely. However, it also reduces security by adding the risk that an
administrator might allow an unprivileged user to share elevated privileges for an
application that the administrator needs to use during the Remote Desktop session.
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Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Policies\System:EnableUIA
DesktopToggle
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Disabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Local
Policies\Security Options\User Account Control: Allow UIAccess applications to prompt
for elevation without using the secure desktop
Impact:
If you enable this setting, ("User Account Control: Allow UIAccess applications to prompt
for elevation without using the secure desktop), requests for elevation are automatically
sent to the interactive desktop (not the secure desktop) and also appear on the remote
administrator's view of the desktop during a Windows Remote Assistance session, and the
remote administrator is able to provide the appropriate credentials for elevation. This
setting does not change the behavior of the UAC elevation prompt for administrators.
Default Value:
Disabled
References:
1. CCE-36863-9
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2.3.17.3 (L1) Ensure 'User Account Control: Behavior of the elevation
prompt for administrators in Admin Approval Mode' is set to 'Prompt
for consent on the secure desktop' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting controls the behavior of the elevation prompt for administrators.
The options are:
- Elevate without prompting: Allows privileged accounts to perform an operation that
requires elevation without requiring consent or credentials. Note: Use this option only in
the most constrained environments.
- Prompt for credentials on the secure desktop: When an operation requires elevation of
privilege, the user is prompted on the secure desktop to enter a privileged user name and
password. If the user enters valid credentials, the operation continues with the user's
highest available privilege.
- Prompt for consent on the secure desktop: When an operation requires elevation of
privilege, the user is prompted on the secure desktop to select either Permit or Deny. If the
user selects Permit, the operation continues with the user's highest available privilege.
- Prompt for credentials: When an operation requires elevation of privilege, the user is
prompted to enter an administrative user name and password. If the user enters valid
credentials, the operation continues with the applicable privilege.
- Prompt for consent: When an operation requires elevation of privilege, the user is
prompted to select either Permit or Deny. If the user selects Permit, the operation
continues with the user's highest available privilege.
- Prompt for consent for non-Windows binaries: (Default) When an operation for a nonMicrosoft application requires elevation of privilege, the user is prompted on the secure
desktop to select either Permit or Deny. If the user selects Permit, the operation continues
with the user's highest available privilege.
The recommended state for this setting is: Prompt for consent on the secure desktop.
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Rationale:
One of the risks that the UAC feature introduced with Windows Vista is trying to mitigate is
that of malicious software running under elevated credentials without the user or
administrator being aware of its activity. This setting raises awareness to the administrator
of elevated privilege operations and permits the administrator to prevent a malicious
program from elevating its privilege when the program attempts to do so.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Policies\System:ConsentPr
omptBehaviorAdmin
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Prompt
for consent on the secure desktop:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Local
Policies\Security Options\User Account Control: Behavior of the elevation prompt for
administrators in Admin Approval Mode
Impact:
This policy setting controls the behavior of the elevation prompt for administrators.
Default Value:
Prompt for consent for non-Windows binaries
References:
1. CCE-37029-6
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2.3.17.4 (L1) Ensure 'User Account Control: Behavior of the elevation
prompt for standard users' is set to 'Automatically deny elevation
requests' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting controls the behavior of the elevation prompt for standard users. The
options are:



Prompt for credentials: When an operation requires elevation of privilege, the user
is prompted to enter an administrative user name and password. If the user enters
valid credentials, the operation continues with the applicable privilege.
Automatically deny elevation requests: When an operation requires elevation of
privilege, a configurable access denied error message is displayed. An enterprise
that is running desktops as standard user may choose this setting to reduce help
desk calls.
Prompt for credentials on the secure desktop: (Default) When an operation requires
elevation of privilege, the user is prompted on the secure desktop to enter a
different user name and password. If the user enters valid credentials, the operation
continues with the applicable privilege. Note that this option was introduced in
Windows 7 and it is not applicable to computers running Windows Vista or
Windows Server 2008.
The recommended state for this setting is: Automatically deny elevation requests.
Rationale:
One of the risks that the User Account Control feature introduced with Windows Vista is
trying to mitigate is that of malicious programs running under elevated credentials without
the user or administrator being aware of their activity. This setting raises awareness to the
user that a program requires the use of elevated privilege operations and requires that the
user be able to supply administrative credentials in order for the program to run.
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Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Policies\System:ConsentPr
omptBehaviorUser
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to
Automatically deny elevation requests:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Local
Policies\Security Options\User Account Control: Behavior of the elevation prompt for
standard users
Impact:
Users will need to provide administrative passwords to be able to run programs with
elevated privileges. This could cause an increased load on IT staff while the programs that
are impacted are identified and standard operating procedures are modified to support
least privilege operations.
Default Value:
Prompt for credentials
References:
1. CCE-36864-7
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2.3.17.5 (L1) Ensure 'User Account Control: Detect application
installations and prompt for elevation' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting controls the behavior of application installation detection for the
computer.
The options are:
- Enabled: (Default for home) When an application installation package is detected that
requires elevation of privilege, the user is prompted to enter an administrative user name
and password. If the user enters valid credentials, the operation continues with the
applicable privilege.
- Disabled: (Default for enterprise) Application installation packages are not detected and
prompted for elevation. Enterprises that are running standard user desktops and use
delegated installation technologies such as Group Policy Software Installation or Systems
Management Server (SMS) should disable this policy setting. In this case, installer detection
is unnecessary.
The recommended state for this setting is: Enabled.
Rationale:
Some malicious software will attempt to install itself after being given permission to run.
For example, malicious software with a trusted application shell. The user may have given
permission for the program to run because the program is trusted, but if they are then
prompted for installation of an unknown component this provides another way of trapping
the software before it can do damage
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Policies\System:EnableIns
tallerDetection
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Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Enabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Local
Policies\Security Options\User Account Control: Detect application installations and
prompt for elevation
Impact:
Users will need to provide administrative passwords to be able to install programs.
Default Value:
Enabled
References:
1. CCE-36533-8
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2.3.17.6 (L1) Ensure 'User Account Control: Only elevate UIAccess
applications that are installed in secure locations' is set to 'Enabled'
(Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting controls whether applications that request to run with a User Interface
Accessibility (UIAccess) integrity level must reside in a secure location in the file system.
Secure locations are limited to the following:
- …\Program Files\, including subfolders
- …\Windows\system32\
- …\Program Files (x86)\, including subfolders for 64-bit versions of Windows
Note: Windows enforces a public key infrastructure (PKI) signature check on any
interactive application that requests to run with a UIAccess integrity level regardless of the
state of this security setting.
The options are:
- Enabled: (Default) If an application resides in a secure location in the file system, it runs
only with UIAccess integrity.
- Disabled: An application runs with UIAccess integrity even if it does not reside in a secure
location in the file system.
The recommended state for this setting is: Enabled.
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Rationale:
UIAccess Integrity allows an application to bypass User Interface Privilege Isolation (UIPI)
restrictions when an application is elevated in privilege from a standard user to an
administrator. This is required to support accessibility features such as screen readers that
are transmitting user interfaces to alternative forms. A process that is started with
UIAccess rights has the following abilities:
- To set the foreground window.
- To drive any application window using SendInput function.
- To use read input for all integrity levels using low-level hooks, raw input, GetKeyState,
GetAsyncKeyState, and GetKeyboardInput.
- To set journal hooks.
- To uses AttachThreadInput to attach a thread to a higher integrity input queue.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Policies\System:EnableSec
ureUIAPaths
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Enabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Local
Policies\Security Options\User Account Control: Only elevate UIAccess applications
that are installed in secure locations
Impact:
If the application that requests UIAccess meets the UIAccess setting requirements,
Windows Vista starts the application with the ability to bypass most of the UIPI
restrictions. If the application does not meet the security restrictions, the application will
be started without UIAccess rights and can interact only with applications at the same or
lower privilege level.
Default Value:
Enabled
References:
1. CCE-37057-7
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2.3.17.7 (L1) Ensure 'User Account Control: Run all administrators in
Admin Approval Mode' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting controls the behavior of all User Account Control (UAC) policy settings
for the computer. If you change this policy setting, you must restart your computer.
The options are:
- Enabled: (Default) Admin Approval Mode is enabled. This policy must be enabled and
related UAC policy settings must also be set appropriately to allow the built-in
Administrator account and all other users who are members of the Administrators group to
run in Admin Approval Mode.
- Disabled: Admin Approval Mode and all related UAC policy settings are disabled. Note: If
this policy setting is disabled, the Security Center notifies you that the overall security of
the operating system has been reduced.
The recommended state for this setting is: Enabled.
Rationale:
This is the setting that turns on or off UAC. If this setting is disabled, UAC will not be used
and any security benefits and risk mitigations that are dependent on UAC will not be
present on the system.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Policies\System:EnableLUA
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Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Enabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Local
Policies\Security Options\User Account Control: Run all administrators in Admin
Approval Mode
Impact:
Users and administrators will need to learn to work with UAC prompts and adjust their
work habits to use least privilege operations.
Default Value:
Enabled
References:
1. CCE-36869-6
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2.3.17.8 (L1) Ensure 'User Account Control: Switch to the secure desktop
when prompting for elevation' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting controls whether the elevation request prompt is displayed on the
interactive user's desktop or the secure desktop.
The options are:
- Enabled: (Default) All elevation requests go to the secure desktop regardless of prompt
behavior policy settings for administrators and standard users.
- Disabled: All elevation requests go to the interactive user's desktop. Prompt behavior
policy settings for administrators and standard users are used.
The recommended state for this setting is: Enabled.
Rationale:
Elevation prompt dialog boxes can be spoofed, causing users to disclose their passwords to
malicious software.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Policies\System:PromptOnS
ecureDesktop
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Enabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Local
Policies\Security Options\User Account Control: Switch to the secure desktop when
prompting for elevation
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Impact:
None. This is the default configuration.
Default Value:
Enabled
References:
1. CCE-36866-2
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2.3.17.9 (L1) Ensure 'User Account Control: Virtualize file and registry
write failures to per-user locations' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting controls whether application write failures are redirected to defined
registry and file system locations. This policy setting mitigates applications that run as
administrator and write run-time application data to %ProgramFiles%, %Windir%,
%Windir%\system32, or HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software.
The options are:
- Enabled: (Default) Application write failures are redirected at run time to defined user
locations for both the file system and registry.
- Disabled: Applications that write data to protected locations fail.
The recommended state for this setting is: Enabled.
Rationale:
This setting reduces vulnerabilities by ensuring that legacy applications only write data to
permitted locations.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Policies\System:EnableVir
tualization
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Enabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Local
Policies\Security Options\User Account Control: Virtualize file and registry write
failures to per-user locations
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Impact:
None. This is the default configuration.
Default Value:
Enabled
References:
1. CCE-37064-3
3 Event Log
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
4 Restricted Groups
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
5 System Services
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
6 Registry
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
7 File System
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
8 Wired Network (IEEE 802.3) Policies
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
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9 Windows Firewall With Advanced Security
This section contains recommendations for configuring the Windows Firewall.
9.1 Domain Profile
This section contains recommendations for the Domain Profile of the Windows Firewall.
9.1.1 (L1) Ensure 'Windows Firewall: Domain: Firewall state' is set to 'On
(recommended)' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
Select On (recommended) to have Windows Firewall with Advanced Security use the
settings for this profile to filter network traffic. If you select Off, Windows Firewall with
Advanced Security will not use any of the firewall rules or connection security rules for this
profile.
The recommended state for this setting is: On (recommended).
Rationale:
If the firewall is turned off all traffic will be able to access the system and an attacker may
be more easily able to remotely exploit a weakness in a network service.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Policies\Microsoft\WindowsFirewall\DomainProfile\EnableFir
ewall
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Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to On
(recommended):
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Windows Firewall
with Advanced Security\Windows Firewall with Advanced Security\Windows Firewall
Properties\Domain Profile\Firewall state
Impact:
None, this is the default configuration.
Default Value:
On
References:
1. CCE-36062-8
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9.1.2 (L1) Ensure 'Windows Firewall: Domain: Inbound connections' is
set to 'Block (default)' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This setting determines the behavior for inbound connections that do not match an
inbound firewall rule. The default behavior is to block connections unless there are firewall
rules to allow the connection.
The recommended state for this setting is: Block (default).
Rationale:
If the firewall allows all traffic to access the system then an attacker may be more easily
able to remotely exploit a weakness in a network service.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Policies\Microsoft\WindowsFirewall\DomainProfile\DefaultIn
boundAction
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Block
(default):
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Windows Firewall
with Advanced Security\Windows Firewall with Advanced Security\Windows Firewall
Properties\Domain Profile\Inbound connections
Impact:
None, this is the default configuration.
Default Value:
Block
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References:
1. CCE-38117-8
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9.1.3 (L1) Ensure 'Windows Firewall: Domain: Outbound connections' is
set to 'Allow (default)' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This setting determines the behavior for outbound connections that do not match an
outbound firewall rule. In Windows Vista / Server 2008 and above, the default behavior is
to allow connections unless there are firewall rules that block the connection.
The recommended state for this setting is: Allow (default).
Rationale:
Some people believe that it is prudent to block all outbound connections except those
specifically approved by the user or administrator. Microsoft disagrees with this opinion,
blocking outbound connections by default will force users to deal with a large number of
dialog boxes prompting them to authorize or block applications such as their web browser
or instant messaging software. Additionally, blocking outbound traffic has little value
because if an attacker has compromised the system they can reconfigure the firewall
anyway.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Policies\Microsoft\WindowsFirewall\DomainProfile\DefaultOu
tboundAction
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Allow
(default):
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Windows Firewall
with Advanced Security\Windows Firewall with Advanced Security\Windows Firewall
Properties\Domain Profile\Outbound connections
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Impact:
None, this is the default configuration.
Default Value:
Allow
References:
1. CCE-36146-9
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9.1.4 (L1) Ensure 'Windows Firewall: Domain: Settings: Display a
notification' is set to 'No' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
Select this option to have Windows Firewall with Advanced Security display notifications to
the user when a program is blocked from receiving inbound connections.
Note: When the Apply local firewall rules setting is configured to No, it's recommended to
also configure the Display a notification setting to No. Otherwise, users will continue
to receive messages that ask if they want to unblock a restricted inbound connection, but
the user's response will be ignored.
The recommended state for this setting is: No.
Rationale:
Firewall notifications can be complex and may confuse the end users, who would not be
able to address the alert.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Policies\Microsoft\WindowsFirewall\DomainProfile\DisableNo
tifications
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to No:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Windows Firewall
with Advanced Security\Windows Firewall with Advanced Security\Windows Firewall
Properties\Domain Profile\Settings Customize\Display a notification
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Impact:
If you configure this policy setting to No, Windows Firewall will not display these
notifications.
Default Value:
Yes
References:
1. CCE-38041-0
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9.1.5 (L1) Ensure 'Windows Firewall: Domain: Settings: Apply local
firewall rules' is set to 'Yes (default)' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This setting controls whether local administrators are allowed to create local firewall rules
that apply together with firewall rules configured by Group Policy.
The recommended state for this setting is: Yes (default).
Rationale:
Users with administrative privileges might create firewall rules that expose the system to
remote attack.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Policies\Microsoft\WindowsFirewall\DomainProfile\AllowLoca
lPolicyMerge
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Yes
(default):
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Windows Firewall
with Advanced Security\Windows Firewall with Advanced Security\Windows Firewall
Properties\Domain Profile\Settings Customize\Apply local firewall rules
Impact:
If you configure this setting to No, administrators can still create firewall rules, but the
rules will not be applied. This setting is available only when configuring the policy through
Group Policy.
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Default Value:
Yes
References:
1. CCE-37860-4
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9.1.6 (L1) Ensure 'Windows Firewall: Domain: Settings: Apply local
connection security rules' is set to 'Yes (default)' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This setting controls whether local administrators are allowed to create connection
security rules that apply together with connection security rules configured by Group
Policy.
The recommended state for this setting is: Yes (default).
Rationale:
Users with administrative privileges might create firewall rules that expose the system to
remote attack.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Policies\Microsoft\WindowsFirewall\DomainProfile\AllowLoca
lIPsecPolicyMerge
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Yes
(default):
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Windows Firewall
with Advanced Security\Windows Firewall with Advanced Security\Windows Firewall
Properties\Domain Profile\Settings Customize\Apply local connection security rules
Impact:
If you configure this setting to No, administrators can still create firewall rules, but the
rules will not be applied. This setting is available only when configuring the policy through
Group Policy.
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Default Value:
Yes
References:
1. CCE-38040-2
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9.1.7 (L1) Ensure 'Windows Firewall: Domain: Logging: Name' is set to
'%SYSTEMROOT%\System32\logfiles\firewall\domainfw.log' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
Use this option to specify the path and name of the file in which Windows Firewall will
write its log information.
The recommended state for this setting is:
%SYSTEMROOT%\System32\logfiles\firewall\domainfw.log.
Rationale:
If events are not recorded it may be difficult or impossible to determine the root cause of
system problems or the unauthorized activities of malicious users.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Policies\Microsoft\WindowsFirewall\DomainProfile\Logging\L
ogFilePath
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to
%SYSTEMROOT%\System32\logfiles\firewall\domainfw.log:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Windows Firewall
with Advanced Security\Windows Firewall with Advanced Security\Windows Firewall
Properties\Domain Profile\Logging Customize\Name
Impact:
The log file will be stored in the specified file.
Default Value:
Not configured
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References:
1. CCE-37482-7
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9.1.8 (L1) Ensure 'Windows Firewall: Domain: Logging: Size limit (KB)' is
set to '16,384 KB or greater' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
Use this option to specify the size limit of the file in which Windows Firewall will write its
log information.
The recommended state for this setting is: 16,384 KB or greater.
Rationale:
If events are not recorded it may be difficult or impossible to determine the root cause of
system problems or the unauthorized activities of malicious users.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Policies\Microsoft\WindowsFirewall\DomainProfile\Logging\L
ogFileSize
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to 16,384 KB
or greater:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Windows Firewall
with Advanced Security\Windows Firewall with Advanced Security\Windows Firewall
Properties\Domain Profile\Logging Customize\Size limit (KB)
Impact:
The log file size will be limited to the specified size, old events will be overwritten by newer
ones when the limit is reached.
Default Value:
Not configured
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References:
1. CCE-36088-3
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9.1.9 (L1) Ensure 'Windows Firewall: Domain: Logging: Log dropped
packets' is set to 'Yes' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
Use this option to log when Windows Firewall with Advanced Security discards an inbound
packet for any reason. The log records why and when the packet was dropped. Look for
entries with the word DROP in the action column of the log.
The recommended state for this setting is: Yes.
Rationale:
If events are not recorded it may be difficult or impossible to determine the root cause of
system problems or the unauthorized activities of malicious users.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Policies\Microsoft\WindowsFirewall\DomainProfile\Logging\L
ogDroppedPackets
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Yes:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Windows Firewall
with Advanced Security\Windows Firewall with Advanced Security\Windows Firewall
Properties\Domain Profile\Logging Customize\Log dropped packets
Impact:
Information about dropped packets will be recorded in the firewall log file.
Default Value:
Not configured
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References:
1. CCE-37523-8
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9.1.10 (L1) Ensure 'Windows Firewall: Domain: Logging: Log successful
connections' is set to 'Yes' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
Use this option to log when Windows Firewall with Advanced Security allows an inbound
connection. The log records why and when the connection was formed. Look for entries
with the word ALLOW in the action column of the log.
The recommended state for this setting is: Yes.
Rationale:
If events are not recorded it may be difficult or impossible to determine the root cause of
system problems or the unauthorized activities of malicious users.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Policies\Microsoft\WindowsFirewall\DomainProfile\Logging\L
ogSuccessfulConnections
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Yes:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Windows Firewall
with Advanced Security\Windows Firewall with Advanced Security\Windows Firewall
Properties\Domain Profile\Logging Customize\Log successful connections
Impact:
Information about successful connections will be recorded in the firewall log file.
Default Value:
Not configured
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References:
1. CCE-36393-7
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9.2 Private Profile
This section contains recommendations for the Private Profile of the Windows Firewall.
9.2.1 (L1) Ensure 'Windows Firewall: Private: Firewall state' is set to 'On
(recommended)' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
Select On (recommended) to have Windows Firewall with Advanced Security use the
settings for this profile to filter network traffic. If you select Off, Windows Firewall with
Advanced Security will not use any of the firewall rules or connection security rules for this
profile.
The recommended state for this setting is: On (recommended).
Rationale:
If the firewall is turned off all traffic will be able to access the system and an attacker may
be more easily able to remotely exploit a weakness in a network service.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Policies\Microsoft\WindowsFirewall\PrivateProfile\EnableFi
rewall
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to On
(recommended):
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Windows Firewall
with Advanced Security\Windows Firewall with Advanced Security\Windows Firewall
Properties\Private Profile\Firewall state
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Impact:
None, this is the default configuration.
Default Value:
On
References:
1. CCE-38239-0
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9.2.2 (L1) Ensure 'Windows Firewall: Private: Inbound connections' is set
to 'Block (default)' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This setting determines the behavior for inbound connections that do not match an
inbound firewall rule. The default behavior is to block connections unless there are firewall
rules to allow the connection.
The recommended state for this setting is: Block (default).
Rationale:
If the firewall allows all traffic to access the system then an attacker may be more easily
able to remotely exploit a weakness in a network service.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Policies\Microsoft\WindowsFirewall\PrivateProfile\DefaultI
nboundAction
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Block
(default):
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Windows Firewall
with Advanced Security\Windows Firewall with Advanced Security\Windows Firewall
Properties\Private Profile\Inbound connections
Impact:
None, this is the default configuration.
Default Value:
Block
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References:
1. CCE-38042-8
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9.2.3 (L1) Ensure 'Windows Firewall: Private: Outbound connections' is
set to 'Allow (default)' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This setting determines the behavior for outbound connections that do not match an
outbound firewall rule. The default behavior is to allow connections unless there are
firewall rules that block the connection.
Important: If you set Outbound connections to Block and then deploy the firewall policy by
using a GPO, computers that receive the GPO settings cannot receive subsequent Group
Policy updates unless you create and deploy an outbound rule that enables Group Policy to
work. Predefined rules for Core Networking include outbound rules that enable Group
Policy to work. Ensure that these outbound rules are active, and thoroughly test firewall
profiles before deploying.
The recommended state for this setting is: Allow (default).
Rationale:
Some people believe that it is prudent to block all outbound connections except those
specifically approved by the user or administrator. Microsoft disagrees with this opinion,
blocking outbound connections by default will force users to deal with a large number of
dialog boxes prompting them to authorize or block applications such as their web browser
or instant messaging software. Additionally, blocking outbound traffic has little value
because if an attacker has compromised the system they can reconfigure the firewall
anyway.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Policies\Microsoft\WindowsFirewall\PrivateProfile\DefaultO
utboundAction
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Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Allow
(default):
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Windows Firewall
with Advanced Security\Windows Firewall with Advanced Security\Windows Firewall
Properties\Private Profile\Outbound connections
Impact:
None, this is the default configuration.
Default Value:
Allow
References:
1. CCE-38332-3
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9.2.4 (L1) Ensure 'Windows Firewall: Private: Settings: Display a
notification' is set to 'No' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
Select this option to have Windows Firewall with Advanced Security display notifications to
the user when a program is blocked from receiving inbound connections.
Note: When the Apply local firewall rules setting is configured to No, it's
recommended to also configure the Display a notification setting to No. Otherwise,
users will continue to receive messages that ask if they want to unblock a restricted
inbound connection, but the user's response will be ignored.
The recommended state for this setting is: No.
Rationale:
Firewall notifications can be complex and may confuse the end users, who would not be
able to address the alert.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Policies\Microsoft\WindowsFirewall\PrivateProfile\DisableN
otifications
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to No:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Windows Firewall
with Advanced Security\Windows Firewall with Advanced Security\Windows Firewall
Properties\Private Profile\Settings Customize\Display a notification
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Impact:
If you configure this policy setting to No, Windows Firewall will not display these
notifications.
Default Value:
Yes
References:
1. CCE-37621-0
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9.2.5 (L1) Ensure 'Windows Firewall: Private: Settings: Apply local
firewall rules' is set to 'Yes (default)' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This setting controls whether local administrators are allowed to create local firewall rules
that apply together with firewall rules configured by Group Policy.
The recommended state for this setting is: Yes (default).
Rationale:
Users with administrative privileges might create firewall rules that expose the system to
remote attack.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Policies\Microsoft\WindowsFirewall\PrivateProfile\AllowLoc
alPolicyMerge
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Yes
(default):
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Windows Firewall
with Advanced Security\Windows Firewall with Advanced Security\Windows Firewall
Properties\Private Profile\Settings Customize\Apply local firewall rules
Impact:
If you configure this setting to No, administrators can still create firewall rules, but the
rules will not be applied. This setting is available only when configuring the policy through
Group Policy.
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Default Value:
Yes
References:
1. CCE-37438-9
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9.2.6 (L1) Ensure 'Windows Firewall: Private: Settings: Apply local
connection security rules' is set to 'Yes (default)' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This setting controls whether local administrators are allowed to create connection
security rules that apply together with connection security rules configured by Group
Policy.
The recommended state for this setting is: Yes (default).
Rationale:
Users with administrative privileges might create firewall rules that expose the system to
remote attack.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Policies\Microsoft\WindowsFirewall\PrivateProfile\AllowLoc
alIPsecPolicyMerge
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Yes
(default):
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Windows Firewall
with Advanced Security\Windows Firewall with Advanced Security\Windows Firewall
Properties\Private Profile\Settings Customize\Apply local connection security rules
Impact:
If you configure this setting to No, administrators can still create firewall rules, but the
rules will not be applied. This setting is available only when configuring the policy through
Group Policy.
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Default Value:
Yes
References:
1. CCE-36063-6
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9.2.7 (L1) Ensure 'Windows Firewall: Private: Logging: Name' is set to
'%SYSTEMROOT%\System32\logfiles\firewall\privatefw.log' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
Use this option to specify the path and name of the file in which Windows Firewall will
write its log information.
The recommended state for this setting is:
%SYSTEMROOT%\System32\logfiles\firewall\privatefw.log.
Rationale:
If events are not recorded it may be difficult or impossible to determine the root cause of
system problems or the unauthorized activities of malicious users.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Policies\Microsoft\WindowsFirewall\PrivateProfile\Logging\
LogFilePath
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to
%SYSTEMROOT%\System32\logfiles\firewall\privatefw.log:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Windows Firewall
with Advanced Security\Windows Firewall with Advanced Security\Windows Firewall
Properties\Private Profile\Logging Customize\Name
Impact:
The log file will be stored in the specified file.
Default Value:
Not configured
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References:
1. CCE-37569-1
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9.2.8 (L1) Ensure 'Windows Firewall: Private: Logging: Size limit (KB)' is
set to '16,384 KB or greater' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
Use this option to specify the size limit of the file in which Windows Firewall will write its
log information.
The recommended state for this setting is: 16,384 KB or greater.
Rationale:
If events are not recorded it may be difficult or impossible to determine the root cause of
system problems or the unauthorized activities of malicious users.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Policies\Microsoft\WindowsFirewall\PrivateProfile\Logging\
LogFileSize
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to 16,384 KB
or greater:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Windows Firewall
with Advanced Security\Windows Firewall with Advanced Security\Windows Firewall
Properties\Private Profile\Logging Customize\Size limit (KB)
Impact:
The log file size will be limited to the specified size, old events will be overwritten by newer
ones when the limit is reached.
Default Value:
Not configured
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References:
1. CCE-38178-0
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9.2.9 (L1) Ensure 'Windows Firewall: Private: Logging: Log dropped
packets' is set to 'Yes' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
Use this option to log when Windows Firewall with Advanced Security discards an inbound
packet for any reason. The log records why and when the packet was dropped. Look for
entries with the word DROP in the action column of the log.
The recommended state for this setting is: Yes.
Rationale:
If events are not recorded it may be difficult or impossible to determine the root cause of
system problems or the unauthorized activities of malicious users.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Policies\Microsoft\WindowsFirewall\PrivateProfile\Logging\
LogDroppedPackets
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Yes:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Windows Firewall
with Advanced Security\Windows Firewall with Advanced Security\Windows Firewall
Properties\Private Profile\Logging Customize\Log dropped packets
Impact:
Information about dropped packets will be recorded in the firewall log file.
Default Value:
Not configured
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References:
1. CCE-35972-9
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9.2.10 (L1) Ensure 'Windows Firewall: Private: Logging: Log successful
connections' is set to 'Yes' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
Use this option to log when Windows Firewall with Advanced Security allows an inbound
connection. The log records why and when the connection was formed. Look for entries
with the word ALLOW in the action column of the log.
The recommended state for this setting is: Yes.
Rationale:
If events are not recorded it may be difficult or impossible to determine the root cause of
system problems or the unauthorized activities of malicious users.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Policies\Microsoft\WindowsFirewall\PrivateProfile\Logging\
LogSuccessfulConnections
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Yes:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Windows Firewall
with Advanced Security\Windows Firewall with Advanced Security\Windows Firewall
Properties\Private Profile\Logging Customize\Log successful connections
Impact:
Information about successful connections will be recorded in the firewall log file.
Default Value:
Not configured
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References:
1. CCE-37387-8
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9.3 Public Profile
This section contains recommendations for the Public Profile of the Windows Firewall.
9.3.1 (L1) Ensure 'Windows Firewall: Public: Firewall state' is set to 'On
(recommended)' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
Select On (recommended) to have Windows Firewall with Advanced Security use the
settings for this profile to filter network traffic. If you select Off, Windows Firewall with
Advanced Security will not use any of the firewall rules or connection security rules for this
profile.
The recommended state for this setting is: On (recommended).
Rationale:
If the firewall is turned off all traffic will be able to access the system and an attacker may
be more easily able to remotely exploit a weakness in a network service.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Policies\Microsoft\WindowsFirewall\PublicProfile\EnableFir
ewall
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to On
(recommended):
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Windows Firewall
with Advanced Security\Windows Firewall with Advanced Security\Windows Firewall
Properties\Public Profile\Firewall state
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Impact:
None, this is the default configuration.
Default Value:
On
References:
1. CCE-37862-0
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9.3.2 (L1) Ensure 'Windows Firewall: Public: Inbound connections' is set
to 'Block (default)' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This setting determines the behavior for inbound connections that do not match an
inbound firewall rule. The default behavior is to block connections unless there are firewall
rules to allow the connection.
The recommended state for this setting is: Block (default).
Rationale:
If the firewall allows all traffic to access the system then an attacker may be more easily
able to remotely exploit a weakness in a network service.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Policies\Microsoft\WindowsFirewall\PublicProfile\DefaultIn
boundAction
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Block
(default):
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Windows Firewall
with Advanced Security\Windows Firewall with Advanced Security\Windows Firewall
Properties\Public Profile\Inbound connections
Impact:
None, this is the default configuration.
Default Value:
Block
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References:
1. CCE-36057-8
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9.3.3 (L1) Ensure 'Windows Firewall: Public: Outbound connections' is
set to 'Allow (default)' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This setting determines the behavior for outbound connections that do not match an
outbound firewall rule. The default behavior is to allow connections unless there are
firewall rules that block the connection.
Important: If you set Outbound connections to Block and then deploy the firewall policy by
using a GPO, computers that receive the GPO settings cannot receive subsequent Group
Policy updates unless you create and deploy an outbound rule that enables Group Policy to
work. Predefined rules for Core Networking include outbound rules that enable Group
Policy to work. Ensure that these outbound rules are active, and thoroughly test firewall
profiles before deploying.
The recommended state for this setting is: Allow (default).
Rationale:
Some people believe that it is prudent to block all outbound connections except those
specifically approved by the user or administrator. Microsoft disagrees with this opinion,
blocking outbound connections by default will force users to deal with a large number of
dialog boxes prompting them to authorize or block applications such as their web browser
or instant messaging software. Additionally, blocking outbound traffic has little value
because if an attacker has compromised the system they can reconfigure the firewall
anyway.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Policies\Microsoft\WindowsFirewall\PublicProfile\DefaultOu
tboundAction
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Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Allow
(default):
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Windows Firewall
with Advanced Security\Windows Firewall with Advanced Security\Windows Firewall
Properties\Public Profile\Outbound connections
Impact:
None, this is the default configuration.
Default Value:
Allow
References:
1. CCE-37434-8
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9.3.4 (L1) Ensure 'Windows Firewall: Public: Settings: Display a
notification' is set to 'Yes' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
Select this option to have Windows Firewall with Advanced Security display notifications to
the user when a program is blocked from receiving inbound connections.
Note: When the Apply local firewall rules setting is configured to Yes, it is also
recommended to also configure the Display a notification setting to Yes. Otherwise,
users will not receive messages that ask if they want to unblock a restricted inbound
connection.
The recommended state for this setting is: Yes.
Rationale:
Some organizations may prefer to avoid alarming users when firewall rules block certain
types of network activity. However, notifications can be helpful when troubleshooting
network issues involving the firewall.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Policies\Microsoft\WindowsFirewall\PublicProfile\DisableNo
tifications
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Yes:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Windows Firewall
with Advanced Security\Windows Firewall with Advanced Security\Windows Firewall
Properties\Public Profile\Settings Customize\Display a notification
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Impact:
If you configure this policy setting to No, Windows Firewall will not display these
notifications.
Default Value:
Yes
References:
1. CCE-38043-6
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9.3.5 (L1) Ensure 'Windows Firewall: Public: Settings: Apply local firewall
rules' is set to 'No' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This setting controls whether local administrators are allowed to create local firewall rules
that apply together with firewall rules configured by Group Policy.
The recommended state for this setting is: No.
Rationale:
When in the Public profile, there should be no special local firewall exceptions per
computer. These settings should be managed by a centralized policy.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Policies\Microsoft\WindowsFirewall\PublicProfile\AllowLoca
lPolicyMerge
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to No:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Windows Firewall
with Advanced Security\Windows Firewall with Advanced Security\Windows Firewall
Properties\Public Profile\Settings Customize\Apply local firewall rules
Impact:
If you configure this setting to No, administrators can still create firewall rules, but the
rules will not be applied. This setting is available only when configuring the policy through
Group Policy.
Default Value:
Yes
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References:
1. CCE-37861-2
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9.3.6 (L1) Ensure 'Windows Firewall: Public: Settings: Apply local
connection security rules' is set to 'No' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This setting controls whether local administrators are allowed to create connection
security rules that apply together with connection security rules configured by Group
Policy.
The recommended state for this setting is: No.
Rationale:
Users with administrative privileges might create firewall rules that expose the system to
remote attack.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Policies\Microsoft\WindowsFirewall\PublicProfile\AllowLoca
lIPsecPolicyMerge
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to No:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Windows Firewall
with Advanced Security\Windows Firewall with Advanced Security\Windows Firewall
Properties\Public Profile\Settings Customize\Apply local connection security rules
Impact:
If you configure this setting to No, administrators can still create firewall rules, but the
rules will not be applied. This setting is available only when configuring the policy through
Group Policy.
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Default Value:
Yes
References:
1. CCE-36268-1
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9.3.7 (L1) Ensure 'Windows Firewall: Public: Logging: Name' is set to
'%SYSTEMROOT%\System32\logfiles\firewall\publicfw.log' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
Use this option to specify the path and name of the file in which Windows Firewall will
write its log information.
The recommended state for this setting is:
%SYSTEMROOT%\System32\logfiles\firewall\publicfw.log.
Rationale:
If events are not recorded it may be difficult or impossible to determine the root cause of
system problems or the unauthorized activities of malicious users.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Policies\Microsoft\WindowsFirewall\PublicProfile\Logging\L
ogFilePath
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to
%SYSTEMROOT%\System32\logfiles\firewall\publicfw.log:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Windows Firewall
with Advanced Security\Windows Firewall with Advanced Security\Windows Firewall
Properties\Public Profile\Logging Customize\Name
Impact:
The log file will be stored in the specified file.
Default Value:
Not configured
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References:
1. CCE-37266-4
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9.3.8 (L1) Ensure 'Windows Firewall: Public: Logging: Size limit (KB)' is
set to '16,384 KB or greater' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
Use this option to specify the size limit of the file in which Windows Firewall will write its
log information.
The recommended state for this setting is: 16,384 KB or greater.
Rationale:
If events are not recorded it may be difficult or impossible to determine the root cause of
system problems or the unauthorized activities of malicious users.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Policies\Microsoft\WindowsFirewall\PublicProfile\Logging\L
ogFileSize
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to 16,384 KB
or greater:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Windows Firewall
with Advanced Security\Windows Firewall with Advanced Security\Windows Firewall
Properties\Public Profile\Logging Customize\Size limit (KB)
Impact:
The log file size will be limited to the specified size, old events will be overwritten by newer
ones when the limit is reached.
Default Value:
Not configured
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References:
1. CCE-36395-2
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9.3.9 (L1) Ensure 'Windows Firewall: Public: Logging: Log dropped
packets' is set to 'Yes' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
Use this option to log when Windows Firewall with Advanced Security discards an inbound
packet for any reason. The log records why and when the packet was dropped. Look for
entries with the word DROP in the action column of the log.
The recommended state for this setting is: Yes.
Rationale:
If events are not recorded it may be difficult or impossible to determine the root cause of
system problems or the unauthorized activities of malicious users.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Policies\Microsoft\WindowsFirewall\PublicProfile\Logging\L
ogDroppedPackets
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Yes:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Windows Firewall
with Advanced Security\Windows Firewall with Advanced Security\Windows Firewall
Properties\Public Profile\Logging Customize\Log dropped packets
Impact:
Information about dropped packets will be recorded in the firewall log file.
Default Value:
Not configured
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References:
1. CCE-37265-6
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9.3.10 (L1) Ensure 'Windows Firewall: Public: Logging: Log successful
connections' is set to 'Yes' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
Use this option to log when Windows Firewall with Advanced Security allows an inbound
connection. The log records why and when the connection was formed. Look for entries
with the word ALLOW in the action column of the log.
The recommended state for this setting is: Yes.
Rationale:
If events are not recorded it may be difficult or impossible to determine the root cause of
system problems or the unauthorized activities of malicious users.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Policies\Microsoft\WindowsFirewall\PublicProfile\Logging\L
ogSuccessfulConnections
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Yes:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Windows Firewall
with Advanced Security\Windows Firewall with Advanced Security\Windows Firewall
Properties\Public Profile\Logging Customize\Log successful connections
Impact:
Information about successful connections will be recorded in the firewall log file.
Default Value:
Not configured
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References:
1. CCE-36394-5
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10 Network List Manager Policies
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
11 Wireless Network (IEEE 802.11) Policies
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
12 Public Key Policies
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
13 Software Restriction Policies
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
14 Network Access Protection NAP Client Configuration
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
15 Application Control Policies
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
16 IP Security Policies
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
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17 Advanced Audit Policy Configuration
This section contains recommendations for configuring the Windows audit facilities.
17.1 Account Logon
This section contains recommendations for configuring the Account Logon audit policy.
17.1.1 (L1) Ensure 'Audit Credential Validation' is set to 'Success and
Failure' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This subcategory reports the results of validation tests on credentials submitted for a user
account logon request. These events occur on the computer that is authoritative for the
credentials. For domain accounts, the domain controller is authoritative, whereas for local
accounts, the local computer is authoritative. In domain environments, most of the Account
Logon events occur in the Security log of the domain controllers that are authoritative for
the domain accounts. However, these events can occur on other computers in the
organization when local accounts are used to log on. Events for this subcategory include:




4774: An account was mapped for logon.
4775: An account could not be mapped for logon.
4776: The domain controller attempted to validate the credentials for an account.
4777: The domain controller failed to validate the credentials for an account.
The recommended state for this setting is: Success and Failure.
Rationale:
Auditing these events may be useful when investigating a security incident.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed.
328 | P a g e
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Success
and Failure:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Advanced Audit
Policy Configuration\Audit Policies\Account Logon\Audit Credential Validation
Impact:
If no audit settings are configured, or if audit settings are too lax on the computers in your
organization, security incidents might not be detected or not enough evidence will be
available for network forensic analysis after security incidents occur. However, if audit
settings are too severe, critically important entries in the Security log may be obscured by
all of the meaningless entries and computer performance and the available amount of data
storage may be seriously affected. Companies that operate in certain regulated industries
may have legal obligations to log certain events or activities.
Default Value:
No auditing
References:
1. CCE-37741-6
329 | P a g e
17.2 Account Management
This section contains recommendations for configuring the Account Management audit
policy.
17.2.1 (L1) Ensure 'Audit Application Group Management' is set to
'Success and Failure' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting allows you to audit events generated by changes to application groups
such as the following:


Application group is created, changed, or deleted.
Member is added or removed from an application group.
Application groups are utilized by Windows Authorization Manager, which is a flexible
framework created by Microsoft for integrating role-based access control (RBAC) into
applications. More information on Windows Authorization Manager is available at MSDN Windows Authorization Manager.
The recommended state for this setting is: Success and Failure.
Rationale:
Auditing events in this category may be useful when investigating an incident.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed.
330 | P a g e
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Success
and Failure:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Advanced Audit
Policy Configuration\Audit Policies\Account Management\Audit Application Group
Management
Impact:
If no audit settings are configured, or if audit settings are too lax on the computers in your
organization, security incidents might not be detected or not enough evidence will be
available for network forensic analysis after security incidents occur. However, if audit
settings are too severe, critically important entries in the Security log may be obscured by
all of the meaningless entries and computer performance and the available amount of data
storage may be seriously affected. Companies that operate in certain regulated industries
may have legal obligations to log certain events or activities.
Default Value:
No Auditing
References:
1. CCE-38329-9
331 | P a g e
17.2.2 (L1) Ensure 'Audit Computer Account Management' is set to
'Success and Failure' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This subcategory reports each event of computer account management, such as when a
computer account is created, changed, deleted, renamed, disabled, or enabled. Events for
this subcategory include:



4741: A computer account was created.
4742: A computer account was changed.
4743: A computer account was deleted.
The recommended state for this setting is: Success and Failure.
Rationale:
Auditing events in this category may be useful when investigating an incident.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed.
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Success
and Failure:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Advanced Audit
Policy Configuration\Audit Policies\Account Management\Audit Computer Account
Management
332 | P a g e
Impact:
If no audit settings are configured, or if audit settings are too lax on the computers in your
organization, security incidents might not be detected or not enough evidence will be
available for network forensic analysis after security incidents occur. However, if audit
settings are too severe, critically important entries in the Security log may be obscured by
all of the meaningless entries and computer performance and the available amount of data
storage may be seriously affected. Companies that operate in certain regulated industries
may have legal obligations to log certain events or activities.
Default Value:
Success
References:
1. CCE-38004-8
333 | P a g e
17.2.3 (L1) Ensure 'Audit Distribution Group Management' is set to
'Success and Failure' (DC only) (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
Description:
This subcategory reports each event of distribution group management, such as when a
distribution group is created, changed, or deleted or when a member is added to or
removed from a distribution group. If you enable this Audit policy setting, administrators
can track events to detect malicious, accidental, and authorized creation of group accounts.
Events for this subcategory include:















4744: A security-disabled local group was created.
4745: A security-disabled local group was changed.
4746: A member was added to a security-disabled local group.
4747: A member was removed from a security-disabled local group.
4748: A security-disabled local group was deleted.
4749: A security-disabled global group was created.
4750: A security-disabled global group was changed.
4751: A member was added to a security-disabled global group.
4752: A member was removed from a security-disabled global group.
4753: A security-disabled global group was deleted.
4759: A security-disabled universal group was created.
4760: A security-disabled universal group was changed.
4761: A member was added to a security-disabled universal group.
4762: A member was removed from a security-disabled universal group.
4763: A security-disabled universal group was deleted.
The recommended state for this setting is: Success and Failure.
Rationale:
Auditing these events may provide an organization with insight when investigating an
incident. For example, when a given unauthorized user was added to a sensitive
distribution group.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed.
334 | P a g e
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Success
and Failure:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Advanced Audit
Policy Configuration\Audit Policies\Account Management\Audit Distribution Group
Management
Impact:
If no audit settings are configured, or if audit settings are too lax on the computers in your
organization, security incidents might not be detected or not enough evidence will be
available for network forensic analysis after security incidents occur. However, if audit
settings are too severe, critically important entries in the Security log may be obscured by
all of the meaningless entries and computer performance and the available amount of data
storage may be seriously affected. Companies that operate in certain regulated industries
may have legal obligations to log certain events or activities.
Default Value:
No auditing
References:
1. CCE-36265-7
335 | P a g e
17.2.4 (L1) Ensure 'Audit Other Account Management Events' is set to
'Success and Failure' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This subcategory reports other account management events. Events for this subcategory
include:


4782: The password hash an account was accessed.
4793: The Password Policy Checking API was called.
The recommended state for this setting is: Success and Failure.
Rationale:
Auditing these events may be useful when investigating a security incident.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed.
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Success
and Failure:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Advanced Audit
Policy Configuration\Audit Policies\Account Management\Audit Other Account Management
Events
336 | P a g e
Impact:
If no audit settings are configured, or if audit settings are too lax on the computers in your
organization, security incidents might not be detected or not enough evidence will be
available for network forensic analysis after security incidents occur. However, if audit
settings are too severe, critically important entries in the Security log may be obscured by
all of the meaningless entries and computer performance and the available amount of data
storage may be seriously affected. Companies that operate in certain regulated industries
may have legal obligations to log certain events or activities.
Default Value:
No auditing
References:
1. CCE-37855-4
337 | P a g e
17.2.5 (L1) Ensure 'Audit Security Group Management' is set to 'Success
and Failure' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This subcategory reports each event of security group management, such as when a
security group is created, changed, or deleted or when a member is added to or removed
from a security group. If you enable this Audit policy setting, administrators can track
events to detect malicious, accidental, and authorized creation of security group accounts.
Events for this subcategory include:
















4727: A security-enabled global group was created.
4728: A member was added to a security-enabled global group.
4729: A member was removed from a security-enabled global group.
4730: A security-enabled global group was deleted.
4731: A security-enabled local group was created.
4732: A member was added to a security-enabled local group.
4733: A member was removed from a security-enabled local group.
4734: A security-enabled local group was deleted.
4735: A security-enabled local group was changed.
4737: A security-enabled global group was changed.
4754: A security-enabled universal group was created.
4755: A security-enabled universal group was changed.
4756: A member was added to a security-enabled universal group.
4757: A member was removed from a security-enabled universal group.
4758: A security-enabled universal group was deleted.
4764: A group's type was changed.
The recommended state for this setting is: Success and Failure.
Rationale:
Auditing these events may be useful when investigating a security incident.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed.
338 | P a g e
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Success
and Failure:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Advanced Audit
Policy Configuration\Audit Policies\Account Management\Audit Security Group Management
Impact:
If no audit settings are configured, or if audit settings are too lax on the computers in your
organization, security incidents might not be detected or not enough evidence will be
available for network forensic analysis after security incidents occur. However, if audit
settings are too severe, critically important entries in the Security log may be obscured by
all of the meaningless entries and computer performance and the available amount of data
storage may be seriously affected. Companies that operate in certain regulated industries
may have legal obligations to log certain events or activities.
Default Value:
Success
References:
1. CCE-38034-5
339 | P a g e
17.2.6 (L1) Ensure 'Audit User Account Management' is set to 'Success
and Failure' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This subcategory reports each event of user account management, such as when a user
account is created, changed, or deleted; a user account is renamed, disabled, or enabled; or
a password is set or changed. If you enable this Audit policy setting, administrators can
track events to detect malicious, accidental, and authorized creation of user accounts.
Events for this subcategory include:
















4720: A user account was created.
4722: A user account was enabled.
4723: An attempt was made to change an account's password.
4724: An attempt was made to reset an account's password.
4725: A user account was disabled.
4726: A user account was deleted.
4738: A user account was changed.
4740: A user account was locked out.
4765: SID History was added to an account.
4766: An attempt to add SID History to an account failed.
4767: A user account was unlocked.
4780: The ACL was set on accounts which are members of administrators groups.
4781: The name of an account was changed:
4794: An attempt was made to set the Directory Services Restore Mode.
5376: Credential Manager credentials were backed up.
5377: Credential Manager credentials were restored from a backup.
The recommended state for this setting is: Success and Failure.
Rationale:
Auditing these events may be useful when investigating a security incident.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed.
340 | P a g e
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Success
and Failure:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Advanced Audit
Policy Configuration\Audit Policies\Account Management\Audit User Account Management
Impact:
If no audit settings are configured, or if audit settings are too lax on the computers in your
organization, security incidents might not be detected or not enough evidence will be
available for network forensic analysis after security incidents occur. However, if audit
settings are too severe, critically important entries in the Security log may be obscured by
all of the meaningless entries and computer performance and the available amount of data
storage may be seriously affected. Companies that operate in certain regulated industries
may have legal obligations to log certain events or activities.
Default Value:
Success
References:
1. CCE-37856-2
341 | P a g e
17.3 Detailed Tracking
This section contains recommendations for configuring the Detailed Tracking audit policy.
17.3.1 (L1) Ensure 'Audit Process Creation' is set to 'Success' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This subcategory reports the creation of a process and the name of the program or user
that created it. Events for this subcategory include:


4688: A new process has been created.
4696: A primary token was assigned to process.
Refer to Microsoft Knowledge Base article 947226: Description of security events in
Windows Vista and in Windows Server 2008 for the most recent information about this
setting.
The recommended state for this setting is: Success.
Rationale:
Auditing these events may be useful when investigating a security incident.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed.
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Success:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Advanced Audit
Policy Configuration\Audit Policies\Detailed Tracking\Audit Process Creation
342 | P a g e
Impact:
If no audit settings are configured, or if audit settings are too lax on the computers in your
organization, security incidents might not be detected or not enough evidence will be
available for network forensic analysis after security incidents occur. However, if audit
settings are too severe, critically important entries in the Security log may be obscured by
all of the meaningless entries and computer performance and the available amount of data
storage may be seriously affected. Companies that operate in certain regulated industries
may have legal obligations to log certain events or activities.
Default Value:
No auditing
References:
1. CCE-36059-4
343 | P a g e
17.4 DS Access
This section contains recommendations for configuring the Directory Services Access audit
policy.
17.4.1 (L1) Ensure 'Audit Directory Service Access' is set to 'Success and
Failure' (DC only) (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
Description:
This subcategory reports when an AD DS object is accessed. Only objects with SACLs cause
audit events to be generated, and only when they are accessed in a manner that matches
their SACL. These events are similar to the directory service access events in previous
versions of Windows Server. This subcategory applies only to domain controllers. Events
for this subcategory include:

4662 : An operation was performed on an object.
The recommended state for this setting is: Success and Failure.
Rationale:
Auditing these events may be useful when investigating a security incident.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed.
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Success
and Failure:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Advanced Audit
Policy Configuration\Audit Policies\DS Access\Audit Directory Service Access
344 | P a g e
Impact:
If no audit settings are configured, or if audit settings are too lax on the computers in your
organization, security incidents might not be detected or not enough evidence will be
available for network forensic analysis after security incidents occur. However, if audit
settings are too severe, critically important entries in the Security log may be obscured by
all of the meaningless entries and computer performance and the available amount of data
storage may be seriously affected. Companies that operate in certain regulated industries
may have legal obligations to log certain events or activities.
Default Value:
No auditing
References:
1. CCE-37433-0
345 | P a g e
17.4.2 (L1) Ensure 'Audit Directory Service Changes' is set to 'Success
and Failure' (DC only) (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
Description:
This subcategory reports changes to objects in Active Directory Domain Services (AD DS).
The types of changes that are reported are create, modify, move, and undelete operations
that are performed on an object. DS Change auditing, where appropriate, indicates the old
and new values of the changed properties of the objects that were changed. Only objects
with SACLs cause audit events to be generated, and only when they are accessed in a
manner that matches their SACL. Some objects and properties do not cause audit events to
be generated due to settings on the object class in the schema. This subcategory applies
only to domain controllers. Events for this subcategory include:




5136 : A directory service object was modified.
5137 : A directory service object was created.
5138 : A directory service object was undeleted.
5139 : A directory service object was moved.
The recommended state for this setting is: Success and Failure.
Rationale:
Auditing these events may be useful when investigating a security incident.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed.
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Success
and Failure.
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Advanced Audit
Policy Configuration\Audit Policies\DS Access\Audit Directory Service Changes
346 | P a g e
Impact:
If no audit settings are configured, or if audit settings are too lax on the computers in your
organization, security incidents might not be detected or not enough evidence will be
available for network forensic analysis after security incidents occur. However, if audit
settings are too severe, critically important entries in the Security log may be obscured by
all of the meaningless entries and computer performance and the available amount of data
storage may be seriously affected. Companies that operate in certain regulated industries
may have legal obligations to log certain events or activities.
Default Value:
No auditing
References:
1. CCE-37616-0
347 | P a g e
17.5 Logon/Logoff
This section contains recommendations for configuring the Logon/Logoff audit policy.
17.5.1 (L1) Ensure 'Audit Account Lockout' is set to 'Success' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This subcategory reports when a user's account is locked out as a result of too many failed
logon attempts. Events for this subcategory include:

4625: An account failed to log on.
The recommended state for this setting is: Success.
Rationale:
Auditing these events may be useful when investigating a security incident.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed.
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Success:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Advanced Audit
Policy Configuration\Audit Policies\Logon/Logoff\Audit Account Lockout
348 | P a g e
Impact:
If no audit settings are configured, or if audit settings are too lax on the computers in your
organization, security incidents might not be detected or not enough evidence will be
available for network forensic analysis after security incidents occur. However, if audit
settings are too severe, critically important entries in the Security log may be obscured by
all of the meaningless entries and computer performance and the available amount of data
storage may be seriously affected. Companies that operate in certain regulated industries
may have legal obligations to log certain events or activities.
Default Value:
Success
References:
1. CCE-37133-6
349 | P a g e
17.5.2 (L1) Ensure 'Audit Logoff' is set to 'Success' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This subcategory reports when a user logs off from the system. These events occur on the
accessed computer. For interactive logons, the generation of these events occurs on the
computer that is logged on to. If a network logon takes place to access a share, these events
generate on the computer that hosts the accessed resource. If you configure this setting to
No auditing, it is difficult or impossible to determine which user has accessed or attempted
to access organization computers. Events for this subcategory include:


4634: An account was logged off.
4647: User initiated logoff.
The recommended state for this setting is: Success.
Rationale:
Auditing these events may be useful when investigating a security incident.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed.
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Success:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Advanced Audit
Policy Configuration\Audit Policies\Logon/Logoff\Audit Logoff
350 | P a g e
Impact:
If no audit settings are configured, or if audit settings are too lax on the computers in your
organization, security incidents might not be detected or not enough evidence will be
available for network forensic analysis after security incidents occur. However, if audit
settings are too severe, critically important entries in the Security log may be obscured by
all of the meaningless entries and computer performance and the available amount of data
storage may be seriously affected. Companies that operate in certain regulated industries
may have legal obligations to log certain events or activities.
Default Value:
Success
References:
1. CCE-38237-4
351 | P a g e
17.5.3 (L1) Ensure 'Audit Logon' is set to 'Success and Failure' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This subcategory reports when a user attempts to log on to the system. These events occur
on the accessed computer. For interactive logons, the generation of these events occurs on
the computer that is logged on to. If a network logon takes place to access a share, these
events generate on the computer that hosts the accessed resource. If you configure this
setting to No auditing, it is difficult or impossible to determine which user has accessed or
attempted to access organization computers. Events for this subcategory include:




4624: An account was successfully logged on.
4625: An account failed to log on.
4648: A logon was attempted using explicit credentials.
4675: SIDs were filtered.
The recommended state for this setting is: Success and Failure.
Rationale:
Auditing these events may be useful when investigating a security incident.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed.
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Success
and Failure:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Advanced Audit
Policy Configuration\Audit Policies\Logon/Logoff\Audit Logon
352 | P a g e
Impact:
If no audit settings are configured, or if audit settings are too lax on the computers in your
organization, security incidents might not be detected or not enough evidence will be
available for network forensic analysis after security incidents occur. However, if audit
settings are too severe, critically important entries in the Security log may be obscured by
all of the meaningless entries and computer performance and the available amount of data
storage may be seriously affected. Companies that operate in certain regulated industries
may have legal obligations to log certain events or activities.
Default Value:
Success
References:
1. CCE-38036-0
353 | P a g e
17.5.4 (L1) Ensure 'Audit Other Logon/Logoff Events' is set to 'Success
and Failure' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This subcategory reports other logon/logoff-related events, such as Terminal Services
session disconnects and reconnects, using RunAs to run processes under a different
account, and locking and unlocking a workstation. Events for this subcategory include:










4649: A replay attack was detected.
4778: A session was reconnected to a Window Station.
4779: A session was disconnected from a Window Station.
4800: The workstation was locked.
4801: The workstation was unlocked.
4802: The screen saver was invoked.
4803: The screen saver was dismissed.
5378: The requested credentials delegation was disallowed by policy.
5632: A request was made to authenticate to a wireless network.
5633: A request was made to authenticate to a wired network.
The recommended state for this setting is: Success and Failure.
Rationale:
Auditing these events may be useful when investigating a security incident.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed.
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Success
and Failure:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Advanced Audit
Policy Configuration\Audit Policies\Logon/Logoff\Audit Other Logon/Logoff Events
354 | P a g e
Impact:
If no audit settings are configured, or if audit settings are too lax on the computers in your
organization, security incidents might not be detected or not enough evidence will be
available for network forensic analysis after security incidents occur. However, if audit
settings are too severe, critically important entries in the Security log may be obscured by
all of the meaningless entries and computer performance and the available amount of data
storage may be seriously affected. Companies that operate in certain regulated industries
may have legal obligations to log certain events or activities.
Default Value:
No auditing
References:
1. CCE-36322-6
355 | P a g e
17.5.5 (L1) Ensure 'Audit Special Logon' is set to 'Success' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This subcategory reports when a special logon is used. A special logon is a logon that has
administrator-equivalent privileges and can be used to elevate a process to a higher level.
Events for this subcategory include:

4964 : Special groups have been assigned to a new logon.
The recommended state for this setting is: Success.
Rationale:
Auditing these events may be useful when investigating a security incident.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed.
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Success:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Advanced Audit
Policy Configuration\Audit Policies\Logon/Logoff\Audit Special Logon
Impact:
If no audit settings are configured, or if audit settings are too lax on the computers in your
organization, security incidents might not be detected or not enough evidence will be
available for network forensic analysis after security incidents occur. However, if audit
settings are too severe, critically important entries in the Security log may be obscured by
all of the meaningless entries and computer performance and the available amount of data
storage may be seriously affected. Companies that operate in certain regulated industries
may have legal obligations to log certain events or activities.
356 | P a g e
Default Value:
Success
References:
1. CCE-36266-5
357 | P a g e
17.6 Object Access
This section contains recommendations for configuring the Object Access audit policy.
17.6.1 (L1) Ensure 'Audit Removable Storage' is set to 'Success and
Failure' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting allows you to audit user attempts to access file system objects on a
removable storage device. A security audit event is generated only for all objects for all
types of access requested. If you configure this policy setting, an audit event is generated
each time an account accesses a file system object on a removable storage. Success audits
record successful attempts and Failure audits record unsuccessful attempts. If you do not
configure this policy setting, no audit event is generated when an account accesses a file
system object on a removable storage.
The recommended state for this setting is: Success and Failure.
Note: A Windows 8, Server 2012 (non-R2) or higher OS is required to access and set this
value in Group Policy.
Rationale:
Auditing removable storage may be useful when investigating an incident. For example, if
an individual is suspected of copying sensitive information onto a USB drive.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed.
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Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Success
and Failure:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Advanced Audit
Policy Configuration\Audit Policies\Object Access\Audit Removable Storage
Impact:
If no audit settings are configured, or if audit settings are too lax on the computers in your
organization, security incidents might not be detected or not enough evidence will be
available for network forensic analysis after security incidents occur. However, if audit
settings are too severe, critically important entries in the Security log may be obscured by
all of the meaningless entries and computer performance and the available amount of data
storage may be seriously affected. Companies that operate in certain regulated industries
may have legal obligations to log certain events or activities.
Default Value:
No auditing
References:
1. CCE-37617-8
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17.7 Policy Change
This section contains recommendations for configuring the Policy Change audit policy.
17.7.1 (L1) Ensure 'Audit Audit Policy Change' is set to 'Success and
Failure' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This subcategory reports changes in audit policy including SACL changes. Events for this
subcategory include:









4715: The audit policy (SACL) on an object was changed.
4719: System audit policy was changed.
4902: The Per-user audit policy table was created.
4904: An attempt was made to register a security event source.
4905: An attempt was made to unregister a security event source.
4906: The CrashOnAuditFail value has changed.
4907: Auditing settings on object were changed.
4908: Special Groups Logon table modified.
4912: Per User Audit Policy was changed.
The recommended state for this setting is: Success and Failure.
Rationale:
Auditing these events may be useful when investigating a security incident.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed.
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Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Success
and Failure:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Advanced Audit
Policy Configuration\Audit Policies\Policy Change\Audit Audit Policy Change
Impact:
If no audit settings are configured, or if audit settings are too lax on the computers in your
organization, security incidents might not be detected or not enough evidence will be
available for network forensic analysis after security incidents occur. However, if audit
settings are too severe, critically important entries in the Security log may be obscured by
all of the meaningless entries and computer performance and the available amount of data
storage may be seriously affected. Companies that operate in certain regulated industries
may have legal obligations to log certain events or activities.
Default Value:
Success
References:
1. CCE-38028-7
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17.7.2 (L1) Ensure 'Audit Authentication Policy Change' is set to
'Success' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This subcategory reports changes in authentication policy. Events for this subcategory
include:











4706: A new trust was created to a domain.
4707: A trust to a domain was removed.
4713: Kerberos policy was changed.
4716: Trusted domain information was modified.
4717: System security access was granted to an account.
4718: System security access was removed from an account.
4739: Domain Policy was changed.
4864: A namespace collision was detected.
4865: A trusted forest information entry was added.
4866: A trusted forest information entry was removed.
4867: A trusted forest information entry was modified.
The recommended state for this setting is: Success.
Rationale:
Auditing these events may be useful when investigating a security incident.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed.
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Success:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Advanced Audit
Policy Configuration\Audit Policies\Policy Change\Audit Authentication Policy Change
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Impact:
If no audit settings are configured, or if audit settings are too lax on the computers in your
organization, security incidents might not be detected or not enough evidence will be
available for network forensic analysis after security incidents occur. However, if audit
settings are too severe, critically important entries in the Security log may be obscured by
all of the meaningless entries and computer performance and the available amount of data
storage may be seriously affected. Companies that operate in certain regulated industries
may have legal obligations to log certain events or activities.
Default Value:
Success
References:
1. CCE-38327-3
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17.8 Privilege Use
This section contains recommendations for configuring the Privilege Use audit policy.
17.8.1 (L1) Ensure 'Audit Sensitive Privilege Use' is set to 'Success and
Failure' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This subcategory reports when a user account or service uses a sensitive privilege. A
sensitive privilege includes the following user rights: Act as part of the operating system,
Back up files and directories, Create a token object, Debug programs, Enable computer and
user accounts to be trusted for delegation, Generate security audits, Impersonate a client
after authentication, Load and unload device drivers, Manage auditing and security log,
Modify firmware environment values, Replace a process-level token, Restore files and
directories, and Take ownership of files or other objects. Auditing this subcategory will
create a high volume of events. Events for this subcategory include:



4672: Special privileges assigned to new logon.
4673: A privileged service was called.
4674: An operation was attempted on a privileged object.
The recommended state for this setting is: Success and Failure.
Rationale:
Auditing these events may be useful when investigating a security incident.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed.
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Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Success
and Failure:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Advanced Audit
Policy Configuration\Audit Policies\Privilege Use\Audit Sensitive Privilege Use
Impact:
If no audit settings are configured, or if audit settings are too lax on the computers in your
organization, security incidents might not be detected or not enough evidence will be
available for network forensic analysis after security incidents occur. However, if audit
settings are too severe, critically important entries in the Security log may be obscured by
all of the meaningless entries and computer performance and the available amount of data
storage may be seriously affected. Companies that operate in certain regulated industries
may have legal obligations to log certain events or activities.
Default Value:
No auditing
References:
1. CCE-36267-3
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17.9 System
This section contains recommendations for configuring the System audit policy.
17.9.1 (L1) Ensure 'Audit IPsec Driver' is set to 'Success and Failure'
(Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This subcategory reports on the activities of the Internet Protocol security (IPsec) driver.
Events for this subcategory include:








4960: IPsec dropped an inbound packet that failed an integrity check. If this
problem persists, it could indicate a network issue or that packets are being
modified in transit to this computer. Verify that the packets sent from the remote
computer are the same as those received by this computer. This error might also
indicate interoperability problems with other IPsec implementations.
4961: IPsec dropped an inbound packet that failed a replay check. If this problem
persists, it could indicate a replay attack against this computer.
4962: IPsec dropped an inbound packet that failed a replay check. The inbound
packet had too low a sequence number to ensure it was not a replay.
4963: IPsec dropped an inbound clear text packet that should have been secured.
This is usually due to the remote computer changing its IPsec policy without
informing this computer. This could also be a spoofing attack attempt.
4965: IPsec received a packet from a remote computer with an incorrect Security
Parameter Index (SPI). This is usually caused by malfunctioning hardware that is
corrupting packets. If these errors persist, verify that the packets sent from the
remote computer are the same as those received by this computer. This error may
also indicate interoperability problems with other IPsec implementations. In that
case, if connectivity is not impeded, then these events can be ignored.
5478: IPsec Services has started successfully.
5479: IPsec Services has been shut down successfully. The shutdown of IPsec
Services can put the computer at greater risk of network attack or expose the
computer to potential security risks.
5480: IPsec Services failed to get the complete list of network interfaces on the
computer. This poses a potential security risk because some of the network
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


interfaces may not get the protection provided by the applied IPsec filters. Use the
IP Security Monitor snap-in to diagnose the problem.
5483: IPsec Services failed to initialize RPC server. IPsec Services could not be
started.
5484: IPsec Services has experienced a critical failure and has been shut down. The
shutdown of IPsec Services can put the computer at greater risk of network attack
or expose the computer to potential security risks.
5485: IPsec Services failed to process some IPsec filters on a plug-and-play event for
network interfaces. This poses a potential security risk because some of the network
interfaces may not get the protection provided by the applied IPsec filters. Use the
IP Security Monitor snap-in to diagnose the problem.
The recommended state for this setting is: Success and Failure.
Rationale:
Auditing these events may be useful when investigating a security incident.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed.
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Success
and Failure:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Advanced Audit
Policy Configuration\Audit Policies\System\Audit IPsec Driver
Impact:
If no audit settings are configured, or if audit settings are too lax on the computers in your
organization, security incidents might not be detected or not enough evidence will be
available for network forensic analysis after security incidents occur. However, if audit
settings are too severe, critically important entries in the Security log may be obscured by
all of the meaningless entries and computer performance and the available amount of data
storage may be seriously affected. Companies that operate in certain regulated industries
may have legal obligations to log certain events or activities.
Default Value:
No auditing
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References:
1. CCE-37853-9
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17.9.2 (L1) Ensure 'Audit Other System Events' is set to 'Success and
Failure' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This subcategory reports on other system events. Events for this subcategory include:













5024 : The Windows Firewall Service has started successfully.
5025 : The Windows Firewall Service has been stopped.
5027 : The Windows Firewall Service was unable to retrieve the security policy
from the local storage. The service will continue enforcing the current policy.
5028 : The Windows Firewall Service was unable to parse the new security policy.
The service will continue with currently enforced policy.
5029: The Windows Firewall Service failed to initialize the driver. The service will
continue to enforce the current policy.
5030: The Windows Firewall Service failed to start.
5032: Windows Firewall was unable to notify the user that it blocked an application
from accepting incoming connections on the network.
5033 : The Windows Firewall Driver has started successfully.
5034 : The Windows Firewall Driver has been stopped.
5035 : The Windows Firewall Driver failed to start.
5037 : The Windows Firewall Driver detected critical runtime error. Terminating.
5058: Key file operation.
5059: Key migration operation.
The recommended state for this setting is: Success and Failure.
Rationale:
Capturing these audit events may be useful for identifying when the Windows Firewall is
not performing as expected.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed.
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Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Success
and Failure:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Advanced Audit
Policy Configuration\Audit Policies\System\Audit Other System Events
Impact:
If no audit settings are configured, or if audit settings are too lax on the computers in your
organization, security incidents might not be detected or not enough evidence will be
available for network forensic analysis after security incidents occur. However, if audit
settings are too severe, critically important entries in the Security log may be obscured by
all of the meaningless entries and computer performance and the available amount of data
storage may be seriously affected. Companies that operate in certain regulated industries
may have legal obligations to log certain events or activities.
Default Value:
Success and Failure
References:
1. CCE-38030-3
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17.9.3 (L1) Ensure 'Audit Security State Change' is set to 'Success'
(Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This subcategory reports changes in security state of the system, such as when the security
subsystem starts and stops. Events for this subcategory include:




4608: Windows is starting up.
4609: Windows is shutting down.
4616: The system time was changed.
4621: Administrator recovered system from CrashOnAuditFail. Users who are not
administrators will now be allowed to log on. Some auditable activity might not
have been recorded.
The recommended state for this setting is: Success.
Rationale:
Auditing these events may be useful when investigating a security incident.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed.
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Success:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Advanced Audit
Policy Configuration\Audit Policies\System\Audit Security State Change
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Impact:
If no audit settings are configured, or if audit settings are too lax on the computers in your
organization, security incidents might not be detected or not enough evidence will be
available for network forensic analysis after security incidents occur. However, if audit
settings are too severe, critically important entries in the Security log may be obscured by
all of the meaningless entries and computer performance and the available amount of data
storage may be seriously affected. Companies that operate in certain regulated industries
may have legal obligations to log certain events or activities.
Default Value:
Success
References:
1. CCE-38114-5
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17.9.4 (L1) Ensure 'Audit Security System Extension' is set to 'Success
and Failure' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This subcategory reports the loading of extension code such as authentication packages by
the security subsystem. Events for this subcategory include:





4610: An authentication package has been loaded by the Local Security Authority.
4611: A trusted logon process has been registered with the Local Security Authority.
4614: A notification package has been loaded by the Security Account Manager.
4622: A security package has been loaded by the Local Security Authority.
4697: A service was installed in the system.
The recommended state for this setting is: Success and Failure.
Rationale:
Auditing these events may be useful when investigating a security incident.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed.
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Success
and Failure:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Advanced Audit
Policy Configuration\Audit Policies\System\Audit Security System Extension
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Impact:
If no audit settings are configured, or if audit settings are too lax on the computers in your
organization, security incidents might not be detected or not enough evidence will be
available for network forensic analysis after security incidents occur. However, if audit
settings are too severe, critically important entries in the Security log may be obscured by
all of the meaningless entries and computer performance and the available amount of data
storage may be seriously affected. Companies that operate in certain regulated industries
may have legal obligations to log certain events or activities.
Default Value:
No auditing
References:
1. CCE-36144-4
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17.9.5 (L1) Ensure 'Audit System Integrity' is set to 'Success and Failure'
(Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This subcategory reports on violations of integrity of the security subsystem. Events for
this subcategory include:










4612 : Internal resources allocated for the queuing of audit messages have been
exhausted, leading to the loss of some audits.
4615 : Invalid use of LPC port.
4618 : A monitored security event pattern has occurred.
4816 : RPC detected an integrity violation while decrypting an incoming message.
5038 : Code integrity determined that the image hash of a file is not valid. The file
could be corrupt due to unauthorized modification or the invalid hash could indicate
a potential disk device error.
5056: A cryptographic self test was performed.
5057: A cryptographic primitive operation failed.
5060: Verification operation failed.
5061: Cryptographic operation.
5062: A kernel-mode cryptographic self test was performed.
The recommended state for this setting is: Success and Failure.
Rationale:
Auditing these events may be useful when investigating a security incident.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed.
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Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Success
and Failure:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Advanced Audit
Policy Configuration\Audit Policies\System\Audit System Integrity
Impact:
If no audit settings are configured, or if audit settings are too lax on the computers in your
organization, security incidents might not be detected or not enough evidence will be
available for network forensic analysis after security incidents occur. However, if audit
settings are too severe, critically important entries in the Security log may be obscured by
all of the meaningless entries and computer performance and the available amount of data
storage may be seriously affected. Companies that operate in certain regulated industries
may have legal obligations to log certain events or activities.
Default Value:
Success and Failure
References:
1. CCE-37132-8
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18 Administrative Templates (Computer)
This section contains recommendations for computer-based administrative templates.
18.1 Control Panel
This section contains recommendations for Control Panel settings.
18.1.1 Personalization
This section contains recommendations for Control Panel personalization settings.
18.1.1.1 (L1) Ensure 'Prevent enabling lock screen camera' is set to
'Enabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
Disables the lock screen camera toggle switch in PC Settings and prevents a camera from
being invoked on the lock screen.
The recommended state for this setting is: Enabled.
Rationale:
Disabling the lock screen camera extends the protection afforded by the lock screen to
camera features.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Policies\Microsoft\Windows\Personalization\NoLockScreenCam
era
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Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Enabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\Control
Panel\Personalization\Prevent enabling lock screen camera
Impact:
If you enable this setting, users will no longer be able to enable or disable lock screen
camera access in PC Settings, and the camera cannot be invoked on the lock screen.
Default Value:
By default, users can enable invocation of an available camera on the lock screen.
References:
1. CCE-38347-1
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18.1.1.2 (L1) Ensure 'Prevent enabling lock screen slide show' is set to
'Enabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
Disables the lock screen slide show settings in PC Settings and prevents a slide show from
playing on the lock screen.
The recommended state for this setting is: Enabled.
Rationale:
Disabling the lock screen slide show extends the protection afforded by the lock screen to
slide show contents.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Policies\Microsoft\Windows\Personalization\NoLockScreenSli
deshow
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Enabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\Control
Panel\Personalization\Prevent enabling lock screen slide show
Impact:
If you enable this setting, users will no longer be able to modify slide show settings in PC
Settings, and no slide show will ever start.
Default Value:
By default, users can enable a slide show that will run after they lock the machine.
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References:
1. CCE-38348-9
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18.2 LAPS
This section contains recommendations for configuring Microsoft Local Administrator
Password Solution (LAPS).
The Group Policy settings contained within this section are provided by the Group Policy
template "AdmPwd.admx/adml" that is included with LAPS.
18.2.1 (L1) Ensure LAPS AdmPwd GPO Extension / CSE is installed (MS
only) (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
In May 2015, Microsoft released the Local Administrator Password Solution (LAPS) tool,
which is free and supported software that allows an organization to automatically set
randomized and unique local Administrator account passwords on domain-attached
workstations and member servers. The passwords are stored in a confidential attribute of
the domain computer account and can be retrieved from Active Directory by approved
Sysadmins when needed.
The LAPS tool requires a small Active Directory Schema update in order to implement, as
well as installation of a Group Policy Client Side Extension (CSE) on targeted computers.
Please see the LAPS documentation for details.
LAPS supports Windows Vista or newer workstation OSes, and Server 2003 or newer
server OSes. LAPS does not support standalone computers - they must be joined to a
domain.
Note: Organizations that utilize 3rd-party commercial software to manage unique &
complex local Administrator passwords on domain members may opt to disregard these
LAPS recommendations.
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Rationale:
Due to the difficulty in managing local Administrator passwords, many organizations
choose to use the same password on all workstations and/or member servers when
deploying them. This poses a serious attack surface security risk because if an attacker
manages to compromise one system and learn the password to its local Administrator
account, then they can leverage that account to instantly gain access to all other computers
that also use that password for their local Administrator account.
Audit:
The LAPS AdmPwd GPO Extension / CSE can be verified to be installed by the presence of
the following registry value:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows
NT\CurrentVersion\Winlogon\GPExtensions\{D76B9641-3288-4f75-942D-087DE603E3EA}:DllName
Remediation:
In order to utilize LAPS, a minor Active Directory Schema update is required, and a Group
Policy Client Side Extension (CSE) must be installed on each managed computer. When
LAPS is installed, the file AdmPwd.dll must be present in the following location and
registered in Windows (the LAPS AdmPwd GPO Extension / CSE installation does this for
you):
C:\Program Files\LAPS\CSE\AdmPwd.dll
Impact:
No impact. When installed and registered properly, AdmPwd.dll takes no action unless
given appropriate GPO commands during Group Policy refresh. It is not a memory-resident
agent or service.
In a disaster recovery scenario where Active Directory is not available, the local
Administrator password will not be retrievable and a local password reset using a tool
(such as Microsoft's Disaster and Recovery Toolset (DaRT) Recovery Image) may be
necessary.
Default Value:
Not Configured
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18.2.2 (L1) Ensure 'Do not allow password expiration time longer than
required by policy' is set to 'Enabled' (MS only) (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
In May 2015, Microsoft released the Local Administrator Password Solution (LAPS) tool,
which is free and supported software that allows an organization to automatically set
randomized and unique local Administrator account passwords on domain-attached
workstations and member servers. The passwords are stored in a confidential attribute of
the domain computer account and can be retrieved from Active Directory by approved
Sysadmins when needed.
The LAPS tool requires a small Active Directory Schema update in order to implement, as
well as installation of a Group Policy Client Side Extension (CSE) on targeted computers.
Please see the LAPS documentation for details.
LAPS supports Windows Vista or newer workstation OSes, and Server 2003 or newer
server OSes. LAPS does not support standalone computers - they must be joined to a
domain.
The recommended state for this setting is: Enabled.
Note: Organizations that utilize 3rd-party commercial software to manage unique &
complex local Administrator passwords on domain members may opt to disregard these
LAPS recommendations.
Rationale:
Due to the difficulty in managing local Administrator passwords, many organizations
choose to use the same password on all workstations and/or member servers when
deploying them. This poses a serious attack surface security risk because if an attacker
manages to compromise one system and learn the password to its local Administrator
account, then they can leverage that account to instantly gain access to all other computers
that also use that password for their local Administrator account.
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Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Policies\Microsoft
Services\AdmPwd:PwdExpirationProtectionEnabled
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Enabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\LAPS\Enable Local Admin
Password Management
Note: This Group Policy path does not exist by default. An additional Group Policy template
(AdmPwd.admx/adml) is required - it is included with Microsoft Local Administrator
Password Solution (LAPS).
Impact:
When you enable this setting, planned password expiration longer than password age
dictated by "Password Settings" policy is NOT allowed.
Default Value:
Not Configured
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18.2.3 (L1) Ensure 'Enable Local Admin Password Management' is set to
'Enabled' (MS only) (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
In May 2015, Microsoft released the Local Administrator Password Solution (LAPS) tool,
which is free and supported software that allows an organization to automatically set
randomized and unique local Administrator account passwords on domain-attached
workstations and member servers. The passwords are stored in a confidential attribute of
the domain computer account and can be retrieved from Active Directory by approved
Sysadmins when needed.
The LAPS tool requires a small Active Directory Schema update in order to implement, as
well as installation of a Group Policy Client Side Extension (CSE) on targeted computers.
Please see the LAPS documentation for details.
LAPS supports Windows Vista or newer workstation OSes, and Server 2003 or newer
server OSes. LAPS does not support standalone computers - they must be joined to a
domain.
The recommended state for this setting is: Enabled.
Note: Organizations that utilize 3rd-party commercial software to manage unique &
complex local Administrator passwords on domain members may opt to disregard these
LAPS recommendations.
Rationale:
Due to the difficulty in managing local Administrator passwords, many organizations
choose to use the same password on all workstations and/or member servers when
deploying them. This poses a serious attack surface security risk because if an attacker
manages to compromise one system and learn the password to its local Administrator
account, then they can leverage that account to instantly gain access to all other computers
that also use that password for their local Administrator account.
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Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Policies\Microsoft Services\AdmPwd:AdmPwdEnabled
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Enabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\LAPS\Enable Local Admin
Password Management
Note: This Group Policy path does not exist by default. An additional Group Policy template
(AdmPwd.admx/adml) is required - it is included with Microsoft Local Administrator
Password Solution (LAPS).
Impact:
If you enable this setting, local administrator password is managed. If you disable or not
configure this setting, local administrator password is NOT managed.
In a disaster recovery scenario where Active Directory is not available, the local
Administrator password will not be retrievable and a local password reset using a tool
(such as Microsoft's Disaster and Recovery Toolset (DaRT) Recovery Image) may be
necessary.
Default Value:
Not Configured
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18.2.4 (L1) Ensure 'Password Settings: Password Complexity' is set to
'Enabled: Large letters + small letters + numbers + special characters'
(MS only) (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
In May 2015, Microsoft released the Local Administrator Password Solution (LAPS) tool,
which is free and supported software that allows an organization to automatically set
randomized and unique local Administrator account passwords on domain-attached
workstations and member servers. The passwords are stored in a confidential attribute of
the domain computer account and can be retrieved from Active Directory by approved
Sysadmins when needed.
The LAPS tool requires a small Active Directory Schema update in order to implement, as
well as installation of a Group Policy Client Side Extension (CSE) on targeted computers.
Please see the LAPS documentation for details.
LAPS supports Windows Vista or newer workstation OSes, and Server 2003 or newer
server OSes. LAPS does not support standalone computers - they must be joined to a
domain.
The recommended state for this setting is: Enabled: Large letters + small letters +
numbers + special characters.
Note: Organizations that utilize 3rd-party commercial software to manage unique &
complex local Administrator passwords on domain members may opt to disregard these
LAPS recommendations.
Rationale:
Due to the difficulty in managing local Administrator passwords, many organizations
choose to use the same password on all workstations and/or member servers when
deploying them. This poses a serious attack surface security risk because if an attacker
manages to compromise one system and learn the password to its local Administrator
account, then they can leverage that account to instantly gain access to all other computers
that also use that password for their local Administrator account.
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Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Policies\Microsoft Services\AdmPwd:PasswordComplexity
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Enabled,
and configure the Password Complexity option to Large letters + small letters +
numbers + special characters:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\LAPS\Password Settings
Note: This Group Policy path does not exist by default. An additional Group Policy template
(AdmPwd.admx/adml) is required - it is included with Microsoft Local Administrator
Password Solution (LAPS).
Impact:
Requires password to contain large letters + small letters + numbers + special characters
Default Value:
Not Configured
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18.2.5 (L1) Ensure 'Password Settings: Password Length' is set to
'Enabled: 15 or more' (MS only) (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
In May 2015, Microsoft released the Local Administrator Password Solution (LAPS) tool,
which is free and supported software that allows an organization to automatically set
randomized and unique local Administrator account passwords on domain-attached
workstations and member servers. The passwords are stored in a confidential attribute of
the domain computer account and can be retrieved from Active Directory by approved
Sysadmins when needed.
The LAPS tool requires a small Active Directory Schema update in order to implement, as
well as installation of a Group Policy Client Side Extension (CSE) on targeted computers.
Please see the LAPS documentation for details.
LAPS supports Windows Vista or newer workstation OSes, and Server 2003 or newer
server OSes. LAPS does not support standalone computers - they must be joined to a
domain.
The recommended state for this setting is: Enabled: 15 or more.
Note: Organizations that utilize 3rd-party commercial software to manage unique &
complex local Administrator passwords on domain members may opt to disregard these
LAPS recommendations.
Rationale:
Due to the difficulty in managing local Administrator passwords, many organizations
choose to use the same password on all workstations and/or member servers when
deploying them. This poses a serious attack surface security risk because if an attacker
manages to compromise one system and learn the password to its local Administrator
account, then they can leverage that account to instantly gain access to all other computers
that also use that password for their local Administrator account.
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Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Policies\Microsoft Services\AdmPwd:PasswordLength
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Enabled,
and configure the Password Length option to 15 or more:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\LAPS\Password Settings
Note: This Group Policy path does not exist by default. An additional Group Policy template
(AdmPwd.admx/adml) is required - it is included with Microsoft Local Administrator
Password Solution (LAPS).
Impact:
Requires the password to have a length of a minimum of 15 characters .
Default Value:
Not Configured
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18.2.6 (L1) Ensure 'Password Settings: Password Age (Days)' is set to
'Enabled: 30 or fewer' (MS only) (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
In May 2015, Microsoft released the Local Administrator Password Solution (LAPS) tool,
which is free and supported software that allows an organization to automatically set
randomized and unique local Administrator account passwords on domain-attached
workstations and member servers. The passwords are stored in a confidential attribute of
the domain computer account and can be retrieved from Active Directory by approved
Sysadmins when needed.
The LAPS tool requires a small Active Directory Schema update in order to implement, as
well as installation of a Group Policy Client Side Extension (CSE) on targeted computers.
Please see the LAPS documentation for details.
LAPS supports Windows Vista or newer workstation OSes, and Server 2003 or newer
server OSes. LAPS does not support standalone computers - they must be joined to a
domain.
The recommended state for this setting is: Enabled: 30 or fewer.
Note: Organizations that utilize 3rd-party commercial software to manage unique &
complex local Administrator passwords on domain members may opt to disregard these
LAPS recommendations.
Rationale:
Due to the difficulty in managing local Administrator passwords, many organizations
choose to use the same password on all workstations and/or member servers when
deploying them. This poses a serious attack surface security risk because if an attacker
manages to compromise one system and learn the password to its local Administrator
account, then they can leverage that account to instantly gain access to all other computers
that also use that password for their local Administrator account.
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Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Policies\Microsoft Services\AdmPwd:PasswordAgeDays
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Enabled,
and configure the Password Age (Days) option to 30 or fewer:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\LAPS\Password Settings
Note: This Group Policy path does not exist by default. An additional Group Policy template
(AdmPwd.admx/adml) is required - it is included with Microsoft Local Administrator
Password Solution (LAPS).
Impact:
Requires a maximum password age of 30 days or less.
Default Value:
Not Configured
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18.3 MSS (Legacy)
This section contains recommendations for the Microsoft Solutions for Security (MSS)
settings.
The Group Policy settings contained within this section are provided by the Group Policy
template "MSS-legacy.admx/adml" that is included with Microsoft Security Compliance
Manager (SCM).
18.3.1 (L1) Ensure 'MSS: (AutoAdminLogon) Enable Automatic Logon
(not recommended)' is set to 'Disabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This setting is separate from the Welcome screen feature in Windows XP and Windows
Vista; if that feature is disabled, this setting is not disabled. If you configure a computer for
automatic logon, anyone who can physically gain access to the computer can also gain
access to everything that is on the computer, including any network or networks to which
the computer is connected. Also, if you enable automatic logon, the password is stored in
the registry in plaintext, and the specific registry key that stores this value is remotely
readable by the Authenticated Users group.
For additional information, see Microsoft Knowledge Base article 324737: How to turn on
automatic logon in Windows.
The recommended state for this setting is: Disabled.
Rationale:
If you configure a computer for automatic logon, anyone who can physically gain access to
the computer can also gain access to everything that is on the computer, including any
network or networks that the computer is connected to. Also, if you enable automatic
logon, the password is stored in the registry in plaintext. The specific registry key that
stores this setting is remotely readable by the Authenticated Users group. As a result, this
entry is appropriate only if the computer is physically secured and if you ensure that
untrusted users cannot remotely see the registry.
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Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Microsoft\Windows
NT\CurrentVersion\Winlogon\AutoAdminLogon
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Disabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\MSS (Legacy)\MSS:
(AutoAdminLogon) Enable Automatic Logon (not recommended)
Note: This Group Policy path does not exist by default. An additional Group Policy template
(MSS-legacy.admx/adml) is required - it is included with Microsoft Security Compliance
Manager (SCM).
Impact:
None. By default this entry is not enabled.
Default Value:
Not defined
References:
1. CCE-37067-6
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18.3.2 (L1) Ensure 'MSS: (DisableIPSourceRouting IPv6) IP source routing
protection level (protects against packet spoofing)' is set to 'Enabled:
Highest protection, source routing is completely disabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
IP source routing is a mechanism that allows the sender to determine the IP route that a
datagram should follow through the network.
The recommended state for this setting is: Enabled: Highest protection, source
routing is completely disabled.
Rationale:
An attacker could use source routed packets to obscure their identity and location. Source
routing allows a computer that sends a packet to specify the route that the packet takes.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\System\CurrentControlSet\Services\Tcpip6\Parameters\DisableIPSource
Routing
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Enabled:
Highest protection, source routing is completely disabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\MSS (Legacy)\MSS:
(DisableIPSourceRouting IPv6) IP source routing protection level (protects against
packet spoofing)
Note: This Group Policy path does not exist by default. An additional Group Policy template
(MSS-legacy.admx/adml) is required - it is included with Microsoft Security Compliance
Manager (SCM).
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Impact:
All incoming source routed packets will be dropped.
Default Value:
Not defined
References:
1. CCE-36871-2
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18.3.3 (L1) Ensure 'MSS: (DisableIPSourceRouting) IP source routing
protection level (protects against packet spoofing)' is set to 'Enabled:
Highest protection, source routing is completely disabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
IP source routing is a mechanism that allows the sender to determine the IP route that a
datagram should take through the network. It is recommended to configure this setting to
Not Defined for enterprise environments and to Highest Protection for high security
environments to completely disable source routing.
The recommended state for this setting is: Enabled: Highest protection, source
routing is completely disabled.
Rationale:
An attacker could use source routed packets to obscure their identity and location. Source
routing allows a computer that sends a packet to specify the route that the packet takes.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\System\CurrentControlSet\Services\Tcpip\Parameters\DisableIPSourceR
outing
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Enabled:
Highest protection, source routing is completely disabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\MSS (Legacy)\MSS:
(DisableIPSourceRouting) IP source routing protection level (protects against packet
spoofing)
Note: This Group Policy path does not exist by default. An additional Group Policy template
(MSS-legacy.admx/adml) is required - it is included with Microsoft Security Compliance
Manager (SCM).
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Impact:
All incoming source routed packets will be dropped.
Default Value:
Not defined
References:
1. CCE-36535-3
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18.3.4 (L1) Ensure 'MSS: (EnableICMPRedirect) Allow ICMP redirects to
override OSPF generated routes' is set to 'Disabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
Internet Control Message Protocol (ICMP) redirects cause the IPv4 stack to plumb host
routes. These routes override the Open Shortest Path First (OSPF) generated routes.
The recommended state for this setting is: Disabled.
Rationale:
This behavior is expected. The problem is that the 10 minute time-out period for the ICMP
redirect-plumbed routes temporarily creates a network situation in which traffic will no
longer be routed properly for the affected host. Ignoring such ICMP redirects will limit the
system's exposure to attacks that will impact its ability to participate on the network.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed for your organization. This group policy object is backed by the following
registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\System\CurrentControlSet\Services\Tcpip\Parameters:EnableICMPRedire
ct
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Disabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\MSS (Legacy)\MSS:
(EnableICMPRedirect) Allow ICMP redirects to override OSPF generated routes
Note: This Group Policy path does not exist by default. An additional Group Policy template
(MSS-legacy.admx/adml) is required - it is included with Microsoft Security Compliance
Manager (SCM).
399 | P a g e
Impact:
When Routing and Remote Access Service (RRAS) is configured as an autonomous system
boundary router (ASBR), it does not correctly import connected interface subnet routes.
Instead, this router injects host routes into the OSPF routes. However, the OSPF router
cannot be used as an ASBR router, and when connected interface subnet routes are
imported into OSPF the result is confusing routing tables with strange routing paths.
Default Value:
Enabled
References:
1. CCE-37988-3
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18.3.5 (L2) Ensure 'MSS: (KeepAliveTime) How often keep-alive packets
are sent in milliseconds' is set to 'Enabled: 300,000 or 5 minutes
(recommended)' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 2 - Domain Controller
 Level 2 - Member Server
Description:
This value controls how often TCP attempts to verify that an idle connection is still intact
by sending a keep-alive packet. If the remote computer is still reachable, it acknowledges
the keep-alive packet.
The recommended state for this setting is: Enabled: 300,000 or 5 minutes
(recommended).
Rationale:
An attacker who is able to connect to network applications could establish numerous
connections to cause a DoS condition.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\System\CurrentControlSet\Services\Tcpip\Parameters:KeepAliveTime
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Enabled:
300,000 or 5 minutes (recommended):
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\MSS (Legacy)\MSS:
(KeepAliveTime) How often keep-alive packets are sent in milliseconds
Note: This Group Policy path does not exist by default. An additional Group Policy template
(MSS-legacy.admx/adml) is required - it is included with Microsoft Security Compliance
Manager (SCM).
401 | P a g e
Impact:
Keep-alive packets are not sent by default by Windows. However, some applications may
configure the TCP stack flag that requests keep-alive packets. For such configurations, you
can lower this value from the default setting of two hours to five minutes to disconnect
inactive sessions more quickly.
Default Value:
Not Configured
References:
1. CCE-36868-8
402 | P a g e
18.3.6 (L1) Ensure 'MSS: (NoNameReleaseOnDemand) Allow the
computer to ignore NetBIOS name release requests except from WINS
servers' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
NetBIOS over TCP/IP is a network protocol that among other things provides a way to
easily resolve NetBIOS names that are registered on Windows-based systems to the IP
addresses that are configured on those systems. This setting determines whether the
computer releases its NetBIOS name when it receives a name-release request.
The recommended state for this setting is: Enabled.
Rationale:
The NetBT protocol is designed not to use authentication, and is therefore vulnerable to
spoofing. Spoofing makes a transmission appear to come from a user other than the user
who performed the action. A malicious user could exploit the unauthenticated nature of the
protocol to send a name-conflict datagram to a target computer, which would cause the
computer to relinquish its name and not respond to queries.
The result of such an attack could be to cause intermittent connectivity issues on the target
computer, or even to prevent the use of Network Neighborhood, domain logons, the NET
SEND command, or additional NetBIOS name resolution.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\System\CurrentControlSet\Services\NetBT\Parameters:nonamereleaseond
emand
403 | P a g e
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Enabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\MSS (Legacy)\MSS:
(NoNameReleaseOnDemand) Allow the computer to ignore NetBIOS name release requests
except from WINS servers
Note: This Group Policy path does not exist by default. An additional Group Policy template
(MSS-legacy.admx/adml) is required - it is included with Microsoft Security Compliance
Manager (SCM).
Impact:
An attacker could send a request over the network and query a computer to release its
NetBIOS name. As with any change that could affect applications, it is recommended that
you test this change in a non-production environment before you change the production
environment.
Default Value:
Not Configured
References:
1. CCE-36879-5
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18.3.7 (L2) Ensure 'MSS: (PerformRouterDiscovery) Allow IRDP to detect
and configure Default Gateway addresses (could lead to DoS)' is set to
'Disabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 2 - Domain Controller
 Level 2 - Member Server
Description:
This setting is used to enable or disable the Internet Router Discovery Protocol (IRDP),
which allows the system to detect and configure default gateway addresses automatically
as described in RFC 1256 on a per-interface basis.
The recommended state for this setting is: Disabled.
Rationale:
An attacker who has gained control of a computer on the same network segment could
configure a computer on the network to impersonate a router. Other computers with IRDP
enabled would then attempt to route their traffic through the already compromised
computer.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\System\CurrentControlSet\Services\Tcpip\Parameters:PerformRouterDis
covery
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Disabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\MSS (Legacy)\MSS:
(PerformRouterDiscovery) Allow IRDP to detect and configure Default Gateway addresses
(could lead to DoS)
Note: This Group Policy path does not exist by default. An additional Group Policy template
(MSS-legacy.admx/adml) is required - it is included with Microsoft Security Compliance
Manager (SCM).
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Impact:
If you disable this entry, Windows Server 2003 (which supports the IRDP) cannot
automatically detect and configure default gateway addresses on the computer.
Default Value:
Not Configured
References:
1. CCE-38065-9
406 | P a g e
18.3.8 (L1) Ensure 'MSS: (SafeDllSearchMode) Enable Safe DLL search
mode (recommended)' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
The DLL search order can be configured to search for DLLs that are requested by running
processes in one of two ways:


Search folders specified in the system path first, and then search the current
working folder.
Search current working folder first, and then search the folders specified in the
system path.
When enabled, the registry value is set to 1. With a setting of 1, the system first searches
the folders that are specified in the system path and then searches the current working
folder. When disabled the registry value is set to 0 and the system first searches the current
working folder and then searches the folders that are specified in the system path.
The recommended state for this setting is: Enabled.
Rationale:
If a user unknowingly executes hostile code that was packaged with additional files that
include modified versions of system DLLs, the hostile code could load its own versions of
those DLLs and potentially increase the type and degree of damage the code can render.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Control\Session Manager\SafeDllSearchMode
407 | P a g e
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Enabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\MSS (Legacy)\MSS:
(SafeDllSearchMode) Enable Safe DLL search mode (recommended)
Note: This Group Policy path does not exist by default. An additional Group Policy template
(MSS-legacy.admx/adml) is required - it is included with Microsoft Security Compliance
Manager (SCM).
Impact:
Applications will be forced to search for DLLs in the system path first. For applications that
require unique versions of these DLLs that are included with the application, this entry
could cause performance or stability problems.
Default Value:
Not defined
References:
1. CCE-36351-5
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18.3.9 (L1) Ensure 'MSS: (ScreenSaverGracePeriod) The time in seconds
before the screen saver grace period expires (0 recommended)' is set to
'Enabled: 5 or fewer seconds' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
Windows includes a grace period between when the screen saver is launched and when the
console is actually locked automatically when screen saver locking is enabled.
The recommended state for this setting is: Enabled: 5 or fewer seconds.
Rationale:
The default grace period that is allowed for user movement before the screen saver lock
takes effect is five seconds. If you leave the default grace period configuration, your
computer is vulnerable to a potential attack from someone who could approach the console
and attempt to log on to the computer before the lock takes effect. An entry to the registry
can be made to adjust the length of the grace period.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Microsoft\Windows
NT\CurrentVersion\Winlogon\ScreenSaverGracePeriod
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Enabled:
5 or fewer seconds:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\MSS (Legacy)\MSS:
(ScreenSaverGracePeriod) The time in seconds before the screen saver grace period
expires (0 recommended)
Note: This Group Policy path does not exist by default. An additional Group Policy template
(MSS-legacy.admx/adml) is required - it is included with Microsoft Security Compliance
Manager (SCM).
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Impact:
Users will have to enter their passwords to resume their console sessions as soon as the
screen saver activates.
Default Value:
5 seconds
References:
1. CCE-37993-3
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18.3.10 (L2) Ensure 'MSS: (TcpMaxDataRetransmissions IPv6) How
many times unacknowledged data is retransmitted' is set to 'Enabled: 3'
(Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 2 - Domain Controller
 Level 2 - Member Server
Description:
This setting controls the number of times that TCP retransmits an individual data segment
(non-connect segment) before the connection is aborted. The retransmission time-out is
doubled with each successive retransmission on a connection. It is reset when responses
resume. The base time-out value is dynamically determined by the measured round-trip
time on the connection.
The recommended state for this setting is: Enabled: 3.
Rationale:
A malicious user could exhaust a target computer's resources if it never sent any
acknowledgment messages for data that was transmitted by the target computer.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\System\CurrentControlSet\Services\TCPIP6\Parameters:tcpmaxdataretra
nsmissions
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Enabled:
3:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\MSS
(Legacy)\MSS:(TcpMaxDataRetransmissions IPv6) How many times unacknowledged data is
retransmitted
Note: This Group Policy path does not exist by default. An additional Group Policy template
(MSS-legacy.admx/adml) is required - it is included with Microsoft Security Compliance
Manager (SCM).
411 | P a g e
Impact:
TCP starts a retransmission timer when each outbound segment is passed to the IP. If no
acknowledgment is received for the data in a given segment before the timer expires, then
the segment is retransmitted up to three times.
Default Value:
Not Configured
References:
1. CCE-37846-3
412 | P a g e
18.3.11 (L2) Ensure 'MSS: (TcpMaxDataRetransmissions) How many
times unacknowledged data is retransmitted' is set to 'Enabled: 3'
(Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 2 - Domain Controller
 Level 2 - Member Server
Description:
This setting controls the number of times that TCP retransmits an individual data segment
(non-connect segment) before the connection is aborted. The retransmission time-out is
doubled with each successive retransmission on a connection. It is reset when responses
resume. The base time-out value is dynamically determined by the measured round-trip
time on the connection.
The recommended state for this setting is: Enabled: 3.
Rationale:
A malicious user could exhaust a target computer's resources if it never sent any
acknowledgment messages for data that was transmitted by the target computer.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\System\CurrentControlSet\Services\Tcpip\Parameters:tcpmaxdataretran
smissions
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Enabled:
3:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\MSS
(Legacy)\MSS:(TcpMaxDataRetransmissions) How many times unacknowledged data is
retransmitted
Note: This Group Policy path does not exist by default. An additional Group Policy template
(MSS-legacy.admx/adml) is required - it is included with Microsoft Security Compliance
Manager (SCM).
413 | P a g e
Impact:
TCP starts a retransmission timer when each outbound segment is passed to the IP. If no
acknowledgment is received for the data in a given segment before the timer expires, then
the segment is retransmitted up to three times.
Default Value:
Not Configured
References:
1. CCE-36051-1
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18.3.12 (L1) Ensure 'MSS: (WarningLevel) Percentage threshold for the
security event log at which the system will generate a warning' is set to
'Enabled: 90% or less' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This setting can generate a security audit in the Security event log when the log reaches a
user-defined threshold.
Note: If log settings are configured to Overwrite events as needed or Overwrite events
older than x days, this event will not be generated.
The recommended state for this setting is: Enabled: 90% or less.
Rationale:
If the Security log reaches 90 percent of its capacity and the computer has not been
configured to overwrite events as needed, more recent events will not be written to the log.
If the log reaches its capacity and the computer has been configured to shut down when it
can no longer record events to the Security log, the computer will shut down and will no
longer be available to provide network services.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Services\Eventlog\Security\WarningLevel
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Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Enabled:
90% or less:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\MSS (Legacy)\MSS:
(WarningLevel) Percentage threshold for the security event log at which the system
will generate a warning
Note: This Group Policy path does not exist by default. An additional Group Policy template
(MSS-legacy.admx/adml) is required - it is included with Microsoft Security Compliance
Manager (SCM).
Impact:
This setting will generate an audit event when the Security log reaches the 90 percent-full
threshold unless the log is configured to overwrite events as needed.
Default Value:
Not defined
References:
1. CCE-36880-3
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18.4 Network
This section contains recommendations for network settings.
18.4.1 Background Intelligent Transfer Service (BITS)
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
18.4.2 BranchCache
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
18.4.3 DirectAccess Client Experience Settings
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
18.4.4 DNS Client
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
18.4.5 Hotspot Authentication
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
18.4.6 Lanman Server
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
18.4.7 Lanman Workstation
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
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18.4.8 Link-Layer Topology Discovery
This section contains recommendations for Link-Layer Topology Discovery settings.
18.4.8.1 (L2) Ensure 'Turn on Mapper I/O (LLTDIO) driver' is set to
'Disabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 2 - Domain Controller
 Level 2 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting changes the operational behavior of the Mapper I/O network protocol
driver.
LLTDIO allows a computer to discover the topology of a network it's connected to. It also
allows a computer to initiate Quality-of-Service requests such as bandwidth estimation and
network health analysis.
The recommended state for this setting is: Disabled.
Rationale:
To help protect from potentially discovering and connecting to unauthorized devices, We
are recommending that this setting be disabled to guarantee the prevention of responding
to network traffic for network topology discovery.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Policies\Microsoft\Windows\LLTD:AllowLLTDIOOnDomain
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Policies\Microsoft\Windows\LLTD:AllowLLTDIOOnPublicNet
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Policies\Microsoft\Windows\LLTD:EnableLLTDIO
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Policies\Microsoft\Windows\LLTD:ProhibitLLTDIOOnPrivateNet
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Remediation:
To implement the recommended configuration state, set the following Group Policy setting
to Disabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\Network\Link-Layer Topology
Discovery\Turn on Mapper I/O (LLTDIO) driver
Impact:
If you disable or do not configure this policy setting, the default behavior of LLTDIO will
apply.
Default Value:
Not Configured.
References:
1. CCE-38170-7
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18.4.8.2 (L2) Ensure 'Turn on Responder (RSPNDR) driver' is set to
'Disabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 2 - Domain Controller
 Level 2 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting changes the operational behavior of the Responder network protocol
driver.
The Responder allows a computer to participate in Link Layer Topology Discovery requests
so that it can be discovered and located on the network. It also allows a computer to
participate in Quality-of-Service activities such as bandwidth estimation and network
health analysis.
The recommended state for this setting is: Disabled.
Rationale:
To help protect from potentially discovering and connecting to unauthorized devices, We
are recommending that this setting be disabled to guarantee the prevention of responding
to network traffic for network topology discovery.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Policies\Microsoft\Windows\LLTD:AllowRspndrOnDomain
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Policies\Microsoft\Windows\LLTD:AllowRspndrOnPublicNet
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Policies\Microsoft\Windows\LLTD:EnableRspndr
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Policies\Microsoft\Windows\LLTD:ProhibitRspndrOnPrivateNet
Remediation:
To implement the recommended configuration state, set the following Group Policy setting
to Disabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\Network\Link-Layer Topology
Discovery\Turn on Responder (RSPNDR) driver
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Impact:
If you disable or do not configure this policy setting, the default behavior of RSPNDR will
apply.
Default Value:
Not Configured.
References:
1. CCE-37959-4
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18.4.9 Microsoft Peer-to-Peer Networking Services
This section contains recommendations for Microsoft Peer-to-Peer Networking Services
settings.
18.4.9.1 Peer Name Resolution Protocol
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
18.4.9.2 (L2) Ensure 'Turn off Microsoft Peer-to-Peer Networking
Services' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 2 - Domain Controller
 Level 2 - Member Server
Description:
The Peer Name Resolution Protocol (PNRP) allows for distributed resolution of a name to
an IPV6 address and port number. The protocol operates in the context of clouds. A cloud is
a set of peer computers that can communicate with each other by using the same IPv6
scope.
Peer-to-Peer protocols allow for applications in the areas of RTC, collaboration, content
distribution and distributed processing.
The recommended state for this setting is: Enabled.
Rationale:
This setting enhances the security of the environment and reduces the overall risk
exposure related to peer-to-peer networking.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Policies\Microsoft\Peernet:Disabled
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Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Enabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\Network\Microsoft Peer-toPeer Networking Services\Turn off Microsoft Peer-to-Peer Networking Services
Impact:
If you enable this setting, peer-to-peer protocols will be turned off.
If you disable this setting or do not configure it, the peer-to-peer protocols will be turned
on.
This setting turns off Microsoft Peer-to-Peer Networking Services in its entirety, and will
cause all dependent applications to stop working.
Default Value:
The default setting is do not configure which is the same as disabled.
References:
1. CCE-37699-6
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18.4.10 Network Connections
This section contains recommendations for Network Connections settings.
18.4.10.1 Windows Firewall
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
18.4.10.2 (L1) Ensure 'Prohibit installation and configuration of Network
Bridge on your DNS domain network' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
You can use this procedure to enable or disable the user's ability to install and configure a
network bridge.
The recommended state for this setting is: Enabled.
Rationale:
Allowing users to create a network bridge increases the risk and attack surface from the
bridged network.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Policies\Microsoft\Windows\Network
Connections:NC_AllowNetBridge_NLA
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Enabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\Network\Network
Connections\Prohibit installation and configuration of Network Bridge on your DNS
domain network
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Impact:
The Network Bridge setting, if enabled, allows users to create a Layer 2 Media Access
Control (MAC) bridge, enabling them to connect two or more physical network segments
together. A network bridge thus allows a computer that has connections to two different
networks to share data between those networks.
In an enterprise environment, where there is a need to control network traffic to only
authorized paths, you can disable the Network Bridge setting on a computer. If you disable
Network Bridge on a computer, users cannot create or configure a network
bridge. Membership in the local Administrators group, or equivalent, is the minimum
required to complete this procedure.
Default Value:
By default, this setting is not configured.
References:
1. CCE-38002-2
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18.4.10.3 (L1) Ensure 'Require domain users to elevate when setting a
network's location' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting determines whether to require domain users to elevate when setting a
network's location.
The recommended state for this setting is: Enabled.
Rationale:
Allowing regular users to set a network location increases the risk and attack surface.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Policies\Microsoft\Windows\Network
Connections:NC_StdDomainUserSetLocation
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Enabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\Network\Network
Connections\Require domain users to elevate when setting a network's location
Impact:
If you enable this policy setting domain users must elevate when setting a network's
location. If you disable or do not configure this policy setting domain users can set a
network's location without elevating.
Default Value:
By default, this setting is not configured.
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References:
1. CCE-38188-9
18.4.11 Network Connectivity Status Indicator
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
18.4.12 Network Isolation
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
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18.4.13 Network Provider
This section contains recommendations for Network Provider settings.
The Group Policy settings contained within this section are provided by the Group Policy
template "NetworkProvider.admx/adml" that is included with MS15-011 / KB3000483 and
the Microsoft Windows 10 Administrative Templates.
18.4.13.1 (L1) Ensure 'Hardened UNC Paths' is set to 'Enabled, with
"Require Mutual Authentication" and "Require Integrity" set for all
NETLOGON and SYSVOL shares' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting configures secure access to UNC paths.
The recommended state for this setting is: Enabled, with "Require Mutual
Authentication" and "Require Integrity" set for all NETLOGON and SYSVOL
shares.
Note: If the environment exclusively contains Windows 8.0 / Server 2012 or higher
systems, then the "Privacy" setting may (optionally) also be set to enable SMB encryption.
However, using SMB encryption will render the targeted share paths completely
inaccessible by older OSes, so only use this additional option with caution and thorough
testing.
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Rationale:
In February 2015, Microsoft released a new control mechanism to mitigate a security risk
in Group Policy as part of MS15-011 / MSKB 3000483. This mechanism requires both the
installation of the new security update and also the deployment of specific group policy
settings to all computers on the domain from Vista/Server 2008 or higher (the associated
security patch to enable this feature was not released for Server 2003). A new group policy
template (NetworkProvider.admx/adml) was also provided with the security update.
Once the new GPO template is in place, the following are the minimum requirements to
remediate the Group Policy security risk:
\\*\NETLOGON RequireMutualAuthentication=1, RequireIntegrity=1
\\*\SYSVOL RequireMutualAuthentication=1, RequireIntegrity=1
Note: A reboot may be required after the setting is applied to a client machine to access the
above paths.
Additional guidance on the deployment of this security setting is available from the
Microsoft Premier Field Engineering (PFE) Platforms TechNet Blog here: Guidance on
Deployment of MS15-011 and MS15-014.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry locations:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Policies\Microsoft\Windows\NetworkProvider\HardenedPaths:\
\*\NETLOGON
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Policies\Microsoft\Windows\NetworkProvider\HardenedPaths:\
\*\SYSVOL
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Enabled
with the following paths configured, at a minimum:
\\*\NETLOGON RequireMutualAuthentication=1, RequireIntegrity=1
\\*\SYSVOL RequireMutualAuthentication=1, RequireIntegrity=1
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\Network\Network
Provider\Hardened UNC Paths
Note: This Group Policy path does not exist by default. An additional Group Policy template
(NetworkProvider.admx/adml) is required - it is included with KB3000483 or with the
Microsoft Windows 10 Administrative Templates.
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Impact:
If you enable this policy, Windows only allows access to the specified UNC paths after
fulfilling additional security requirements.
Default Value:
Not Configured
18.4.14 Offline Files
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
18.4.15 QoS Packet Scheduler
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
18.4.16 SNMP
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
18.4.17 SSL Configuration Settings
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
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18.4.18 TCPIP Settings
This section contains TCP/IP configuration settings.
18.4.18.1 IPv6 Transition Technologies
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
18.4.18.2 Parameters
This section contains TCP/IP parameter configuration settings.
18.4.18.2.1 (L2) Disable IPv6 (Ensure TCPIP6 Parameter
'DisabledComponents' is set to '0xff (255)') (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 2 - Domain Controller
 Level 2 - Member Server
Description:
Internet Protocol version 6 (IPv6) is a set of protocols that computers use to exchange
information over the Internet and over home and business networks. IPv6 allows for many
more IP addresses to be assigned than IPv4 did. Older networking, hosts and operating
systems may not support IPv6 natively.
The recommended state for this setting is: DisabledComponents - 0xff (255)
Rationale:
Since the vast majority of private corporate networks have no need to utilize IPv6 (because
they have access to private IPv4 addressing), disabling IPv6 components reduces a possible
attack surface that is also harder to monitor the traffic on. As a result, we recommend
configuring IPv6 to a Disabled state when it is not needed.
Audit:
Navigate to the Registry path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed.
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Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration, set the following Registry value to 0xff
(255) (DWORD):
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Services\TCPIP6\Parameters:DisabledCompone
nts
Note: Although Microsoft does not provide an ADMX template to configure this registry
value, a custom .ADM template (Disable-IPv6-Components-KB929852.adm) is provided in
the CIS Benchmark Remediation Kit to facilitate its configuration. Be aware though that
simply turning off the group policy setting in the .ADM template will not "undo" the change
once applied. Instead, the opposite setting must be applied to change the registry value to
the opposite state.
Impact:
Connectivity to other systems using IPv6 will no longer operate, and software that depends
on IPv6 will cease to function. Examples of Microsoft applications that may use IPv6
include: Remote Assistance, HomeGroup, DirectAccess, Windows Mail.
This registry change is documented in Microsoft Knowledge Base article 929852: How to
disable IPv6 or its components in Windows.
Note: This registry change does not take effect until the next reboot.
Default Value:
Not Configured
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18.4.19 Windows Connect Now
This section contains recommendations for Windows Connect Now settings.
18.4.19.1 (L2) Ensure 'Configuration of wireless settings using Windows
Connect Now' is set to 'Disabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 2 - Domain Controller
 Level 2 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting allows the configuration of wireless settings using Windows Connect
Now (WCN). The WCN Registrar enables the discovery and configuration of devices over
Ethernet (UPnP) over In-band 802.11 Wi-Fi through the Windows Portable Device API
(WPD) and via USB Flash drives. Additional options are available to allow discovery and
configuration over a specific medium.
The recommended state for this setting is: Disabled.
Rationale:
This setting enhances the security of the environment and reduces the overall risk
exposure related to user configuration of wireless settings.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Policies\Microsoft\Windows\WCN\Registrars:EnableRegistrars
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Policies\Microsoft\Windows\WCN\Registrars:DisableUPnPRegis
trar
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Policies\Microsoft\Windows\WCN\Registrars:DisableInBand802
DOT11Registrar
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Policies\Microsoft\Windows\WCN\Registrars:DisableFlashConf
igRegistrar
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Policies\Microsoft\Windows\WCN\Registrars:DisableWPDRegist
rar
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Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Disabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\Network\Windows Connect
Now\Configuration of wireless settings using Windows Connect Now
Impact:
If you enable this policy setting additional choices are available to turn off the operations
over a specific medium. If you disable this policy setting operations are disabled over all
media. If you do not configure this policy setting operations are enabled over all media.
Default Value:
The default for this policy setting allows operations over all media.
References:
1. CCE-37481-9
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18.4.19.2 (L2) Ensure 'Prohibit access of the Windows Connect Now
wizards' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 2 - Domain Controller
 Level 2 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting prohibits access to Windows Connect Now (WCN) wizards.
The recommended state for this setting is: Enabled.
Rationale:
Allowing standard users to access the Windows Connect Now wizard increases the risk and
attack surface.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Policies\Microsoft\Windows\WCN\UI:DisableWcnUi
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Enabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\Network\Network\Windows
Connect Now\Prohibit access of the Windows Connect Now wizards
Impact:
If you enable this policy setting the wizards are turned off and users have no access to any
of the wizard tasks. All the configuration related tasks including "Set up a wireless router
or access point" and "Add a wireless device" are disabled. If you disable or do not configure
this policy setting users can access the wizard tasks including "Set up a wireless router or
access point" and "Add a wireless device."
Default Value:
The default for this policy setting allows users to access all WCN wizards.
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References:
1. CCE-36109-7
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18.4.20 Windows Connection Manager
This section contains recommendations for Windows Connection Manager settings.
18.4.20.1 (L1) Ensure 'Minimize the number of simultaneous
connections to the Internet or a Windows Domain' is set to 'Enabled'
(Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting prevents computers from establishing multiple simultaneous
connections to either the Internet or to a Windows domain.
The recommended state for this setting is: Enabled.
Rationale:
Blocking simultaneous connections can help prevent a user unknowingly allowing network
traffic to flow between the Internet and the corporate network.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Policies\Microsoft\Windows\WcmSvc\GroupPolicy:fMinimizeCon
nections
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Enabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\Network\Windows Connection
Manager\Minimize the number of simultaneous connections to the Internet or a Windows
Domain
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Impact:
If this policy setting is enabled, when the computer has at least one active connection to the
Internet, a new automatic connection attempt to the Internet is blocked. When the
computer has at least one active connection to a Windows domain, a new automatic
connection to the same Windows domain is also blocked. Additional manual connection
attempts by users to the Internet or to a Windows domain are not blocked by this policy
setting.
Default Value:
Not Configured
References:
1. CCE-38338-0
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18.4.20.2 (L2) Ensure 'Prohibit connection to non-domain networks
when connected to domain authenticated network' is set to 'Enabled'
(MS only) (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 2 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting prevents computers from connecting to both a domain based network
and a non-domain based network at the same time.
The recommended state for this setting is: Enabled.
Rationale:
The potential concern is that a user would unknowingly allow network traffic to flow
between the insecure public network and the managed corporate network.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Policies\Microsoft\Windows\WcmSvc\GroupPolicy:fBlockNonDom
ain
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Enabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\Network\Windows Connection
Manager\Prohibit connection to non-domain networks when connected to domain
authenticated network
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Impact:
If this policy setting is enabled, the computer responds to automatic and manual network
connection attempts based on the following circumstances:
- Automatic connection attempts
- When the computer is already connected to a domain based network, all automatic
connection attempts to non-domain networks are blocked.
- When the computer is already connected to a non-domain based network, automatic
connection attempts to domain based networks are blocked.
- Manual connection attempts
- When the computer is already connected to either a non-domain based network or a
domain based network over media other than Ethernet, and a user attempts to create a
manual connection to an additional network in violation of this policy setting, the existing
network connection is disconnected and the manual connection is allowed.
- When the computer is already connected to either a non-domain based network or a
domain based network over Ethernet, and a user attempts to create a manual connection to
an additional network in violation of this policy setting, the existing Ethernet connection is
maintained and the manual connection attempt is blocked.
Default Value:
Not Configured. If this policy setting is not configured or is disabled, computers are allowed
to connect simultaneously to both domain and non-domain networks.
References:
1. CCE-37627-7
18.5 Printers
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
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18.6 SCM: Pass the Hash Mitigations
This section contains recommendations for mitigating Pass-the-Hash attacks.
The Group Policy settings contained within this section are provided by the Group Policy
template "PtH.admx/adml" that is included with Microsoft Security Compliance Manager
(SCM).
18.6.1 (L1) Ensure 'Apply UAC restrictions to local accounts on network
logons' is set to 'Enabled' (MS only) (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This setting controls whether local accounts can be used for remote administration via
network logon (e.g., NET USE, connecting to C$, etc.). Local accounts are at high risk for
credential theft when the same account and password is configured on multiple systems.
Enabling this policy significantly reduces that risk.
Enabled: Applies UAC token-filtering to local accounts on network logons. Membership in
powerful group such as Administrators is disabled and powerful privileges are removed
from the resulting access token. This configures the LocalAccountTokenFilterPolicy
registry value to 0. This is the default behavior for Windows.
Disabled: Allows local accounts to have full administrative rights when authenticating via
network logon, by configuring the LocalAccountTokenFilterPolicy registry value to 1.
For more information about local accounts and credential theft, review the "Mitigating
Pass-the-Hash (PtH) Attacks and Other Credential Theft Techniques" documents.
For more information about LocalAccountTokenFilterPolicy, see Microsoft Knowledge
Base article 951016: Description of User Account Control and remote restrictions in
Windows Vista.
The recommended state for this setting is: Enabled.
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Rationale:
Local accounts are at high risk for credential theft when the same account and password is
configured on multiple systems. Ensuring this policy is Enabled significantly reduces that
risk.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Policies\System\LocalAcco
untTokenFilterPolicy
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Enabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\SCM: Pass the Hash
Mitigations\Apply UAC restrictions to local accounts on network logons
Note: This Group Policy path does not exist by default. An additional Group Policy template
(PtH.admx/adml) is required - it is included with Microsoft Security Compliance Manager
(SCM).
Impact:
None - this is the default behavior.
Default Value:
Enabled
References:
1. CCE-37069-2
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18.6.2 (L1) Ensure 'WDigest Authentication' is set to 'Disabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
When WDigest authentication is enabled, Lsass.exe retains a copy of the user's plaintext
password in memory, where it can be at risk of theft. If this setting is not configured,
WDigest authentication is disabled in Windows 8.1 and in Windows Server 2012 R2; it is
enabled by default in earlier versions of Windows and Windows Server.
For more information about local accounts and credential theft, review the "Mitigating
Pass-the-Hash (PtH) Attacks and Other Credential Theft Techniques" documents.
For more information about UseLogonCredential, see Microsoft Knowledge Base article
2871997: Microsoft Security Advisory Update to improve credentials protection and
management May 13, 2014.
The recommended state for this setting is: Disabled.
Rationale:
Preventing the plaintext storage of credentials in memory may reduce opportunity for
credential theft.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Control\SecurityProviders\WDigest\UseLogon
Credential
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Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Disabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\SCM: Pass the Hash
Mitigations\WDigest Authentication (disabling may require KB2871997)
Note: This Group Policy path does not exist by default. An additional Group Policy template
(PtH.admx/adml) is required - it is included with Microsoft Security Compliance Manager
(SCM).
Impact:
None - this is the default behavior for Windows 8.1 and Server 2012 R2.
References:
1. CCE-38444-6
18.7 Start Menu and Taskbar
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
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18.8 System
This section contains recommendations for System settings.
18.8.1 Access-Denied Assistance
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
18.8.2 Audit Process Creation
This section contains settings related to auditing of process creation events.
18.8.2.1 (L1) Ensure 'Include command line in process creation events' is
set to 'Disabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting determines what information is logged in security audit events when a
new process has been created.
The recommended state for this setting is: Disabled.
Rationale:
When this policy setting is enabled, any user who has read access to the security events can
read the command-line arguments for any successfully created process. Command-line
arguments may contain sensitive or private information such as passwords or user data.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Policies\System\Audit:Pro
cessCreationIncludeCmdLine_Enabled
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Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Disabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\System\Audit Process
Creation\Include command line in process creation events
Impact:
If you disable or do not configure this policy setting, the process's command line
information will not be included in Audit Process Creation events.
Default Value:
Not Configured.
References:
1. CCE-36925-6
18.8.3 Credentials Delegation
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
18.8.4 Device Guard
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
The Group Policy settings contained within this section are provided by the Group Policy
template "deviceguard.admx/adml" that is included with the Microsoft Windows 10
Administrative Templates.
18.8.5 Device Installation
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
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18.8.6 Device Redirection
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
The Group Policy settings contained within this section are provided by the Group Policy
template "DeviceRedirection.admx/adml" that is included with the Microsoft Windows
7/2008R2, 8/2012, 8.1/2012R2 and Windows 10 Administrative Templates.
18.8.7 Disk NV Cache
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
18.8.8 Disk Quotas
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
18.8.9 Distributed COM
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
18.8.10 Driver Installation
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
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18.8.11 Early Launch Antimalware
This section contains recommendations for configuring boot-start driver initialization
settings.
18.8.11.1 (L1) Ensure 'Boot-Start Driver Initialization Policy' is set to
'Enabled: Good, unknown and bad but critical' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting allows you to specify which boot-start drivers are initialized based on a
classification determined by an Early Launch Antimalware boot-start driver. The Early
Launch Antimalware boot-start driver can return the following classifications for each
boot-start driver:




Good: The driver has been signed and has not been tampered with.
Bad: The driver has been identified as malware. It is recommended that you do not
allow known bad drivers to be initialized.
Bad, but required for boot: The driver has been identified as malware, but the
computer cannot successfully boot without loading this driver.
Unknown: This driver has not been attested to by your malware detection application
and has not been classified by the Early Launch Antimalware boot-start driver.
If you enable this policy setting you will be able to choose which boot-start drivers to
initialize the next time the computer is started.
If you disable or do not configure this policy setting, the boot start drivers determined to be
Good, Unknown or Bad but Boot Critical are initialized and the initialization of drivers
determined to be Bad is skipped.
If your malware detection application does not include an Early Launch Antimalware bootstart driver or if your Early Launch Antimalware boot-start driver has been disabled, this
setting has no effect and all boot-start drivers are initialized.
The recommended state for this setting is: Enabled: Good, unknown and bad but
critical.
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Rationale:
This policy setting helps reduce the impact of malware that has already infected your
system.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\System\CurrentControlSet\Policies\EarlyLaunch\DriverLoadPolicy
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Enabled:
Good, unknown and bad but critical:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\System\Early Launch
Antimalware\Boot-Start Driver Initialization Policy
Impact:
None - this is the default behavior.
Default Value:
Not configured
References:
1. CCE-37912-3
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18.8.12 Enhanced Storage Access
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
The Group Policy settings contained within this section are provided by the Group Policy
template "EnhancedStorage.admx/adml" that is included with the Microsoft Windows
7/2008R2, 8/2012, 8.1/2012R2 and Windows 10 Administrative Templates.
18.8.13 File Classification Infrastructure
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
18.8.14 File Share Shadow Copy Agent
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
The Group Policy settings contained within this section are provided by the Group Policy
template "FileServerVSSAgent.admx/adml" that is included with the Microsoft Windows
8/2012, 8.1/2012R2 and Windows 10 Administrative Templates.
18.8.15 File Share Shadow Copy Provider
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
18.8.16 Filesystem
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
18.8.17 Folder Redirection
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
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18.8.18 Group Policy
This section contains recommendations for configuring group policy-related settings.
18.8.18.1 Logging and tracing
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
18.8.18.2 (L1) Ensure 'Configure registry policy processing: Do not apply
during periodic background processing' is set to 'Enabled: FALSE'
(Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
The "Do not apply during periodic background processing" option prevents the system
from updating affected policies in the background while the computer is in use. When
background updates are disabled, policy changes will not take effect until the next user
logon or system restart.
The recommended state for this setting is: Enabled: FALSE (unchecked).
Rationale:
Setting this option to false (unchecked) will ensure that domain policy changes take effect
more quickly, as compared to waiting until the next user logon or system restart.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Policies\Microsoft\Windows\Group Policy\{35378EAC-683F11D2-A89A-00C04FBBCFA2}\NoBackgroundPolicy
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Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Enabled,
then set the Do not apply during periodic background processing option to FALSE
(unchecked):
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\System\Group Policy\Configure
registry policy processing
Impact:
Group Policies will be reapplied every time they are refreshed, which could have a slight
impact on performance.
Default Value:
Not configured
References:
1. CCE-36169-1
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18.8.18.3 (L1) Ensure 'Configure registry policy processing: Process even
if the Group Policy objects have not changed' is set to 'Enabled: TRUE'
(Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
The "Process even if the Group Policy objects have not changed" option updates and
reapplies policies even if the policies have not changed.
The recommended state for this setting is: Enabled: TRUE (checked).
Rationale:
Setting this option to true (checked) will ensure unauthorized changes that might have
been configured locally are forced to match the domain-based Group Policy settings again.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Policies\Microsoft\Windows\Group Policy\{35378EAC-683F11D2-A89A-00C04FBBCFA2}\NoGPOListChanges
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Enabled,
then set the Process even if the Group Policy objects have not changed option to
TRUE (checked):
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\System\Group Policy\Configure
registry policy processing
Impact:
Group Policies will be reapplied every time they are refreshed, which could have a slight
impact on performance.
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References:
1. CCE-36169-1
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18.8.18.4 (L1) Ensure 'Turn off background refresh of Group Policy' is set
to 'Disabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting prevents Group Policy from being updated while the computer is in use.
This policy setting applies to Group Policy for computers, users and domain controllers.
The recommended state for this setting is: Disabled.
Rationale:
Setting this option to false (unchecked) will ensure that group policy changes take effect
more quickly, as compared to waiting until the next user logon or system restart.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is in effect when the following registry location does
not exist:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Policies\System:DisableBk
GndGroupPolicy
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Disabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\System\Group Policy\Turn off
background refresh of Group Policy
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Impact:
None - this is the default behavior.
If you enable this policy setting the system waits until the current user logs off the system
before updating the computer and user settings. If you disable or do not configure this
policy setting updates can be applied while users are working.
The frequency of updates is determined by the "Set Group Policy refresh interval for
computers" and "Set Group Policy refresh interval for users" policy settings.
Note: If you make changes to this policy setting you must restart your computer for it to
take effect.
Default Value:
The default value is Not Configured which is equivalent to Disabled.
References:
1. CCE-37712-7
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18.8.19 Internet Communication Management
This section contains recommendations related to Internet Communication Management.
18.8.19.1 Internet Communication settings
This section contains recommendations related to Internet Communication settings.
18.8.19.1.1 (L2) Ensure 'Turn off access to the Store' is set to 'Enabled'
(Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 2 - Domain Controller
 Level 2 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting specifies whether to use the Store service for finding an application to
open a file with an unhandled file type or protocol association. When a user opens a file
type or protocol that is not associated with any applications on the computer, the user is
given the choice to select a local application or use the Store service to find an application.
The recommended state for this setting is: Enabled.
Rationale:
The Store service is a retail outlet built into Windows, primarily for consumer use. In an
enterprise environment the IT department should be managing the installation of all
applications to reduce the risk of the installation of vulnerable software.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Policies\Microsoft\Windows\Explorer:NoUseStoreOpenWith
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Enabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\System\Internet Communication
Management\Internet Communication settings\Turn off access to the Store
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Impact:
If you enable this policy setting, the "Look for an app in the Store" item in the Open With
dialog is removed.
Default Value:
Not Configured.
References:
1. CCE-37904-0
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18.8.19.1.2 (L2) Ensure 'Turn off downloading of print drivers over HTTP'
is set to 'Enabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 2 - Domain Controller
 Level 2 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting controls whether the computer can download print driver packages
over HTTP. To set up HTTP printing, printer drivers that are not available in the standard
operating system installation might need to be downloaded over HTTP.
The recommended state for this setting is: Enabled.
Rationale:
Users might download drivers that include malicious code.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Policies\Microsoft\Windows
NT\Printers\DisableWebPnPDownload
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Enabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\System\Internet Communication
Management\Internet Communication settings\Turn off downloading of print drivers over
HTTP
Impact:
This policy setting does not prevent the client computer from printing to printers on the
intranet or the Internet over HTTP. It only prohibits drivers that are not already installed
locally from downloading.
Default Value:
Not configured
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References:
1. CCE-36625-2
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18.8.19.1.3 (L2) Ensure 'Turn off handwriting personalization data
sharing' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 2 - Domain Controller
 Level 2 - Member Server
Description:
This setting turns off data sharing from the handwriting recognition personalization tool.
The handwriting recognition personalization tool enables Tablet PC users to adapt
handwriting recognition to their own writing style by providing writing samples. The tool
can optionally share user writing samples with Microsoft to improve handwriting
recognition in future versions of Windows. The tool generates reports and transmits them
to Microsoft over a secure connection.
The recommended state for this setting is: Enabled.
Rationale:
A person's handwriting is Personally Identifiable Information (PII), especially when it
comes to your signature. As such, it is unacceptable in many environments to automatically
upload PII to a website without explicit approval by the user.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Policies\Microsoft\Windows\TabletPC:PreventHandwritingData
Sharing
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Enabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\System\Internet Communication
Management\Internet Communication settings\Turn off handwriting personalization data
sharing
Note: This Group Policy setting is provided by the Group Policy template
"ShapeCollector.admx/adml" that is included with the Microsoft Windows 7/2008R2,
8/2012, 8.1/2012R2 and Windows 10 Administrative Templates.
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Impact:
If you enable this policy, Tablet PC users cannot choose to share writing samples from the
handwriting recognition personalization tool with Microsoft.
Default Value:
Not Configured. If you do not configure this policy, Tablet PC users can choose whether or
not they want to share their writing samples from the handwriting recognition
personalization tool with Microsoft.
References:
1. CCE-37911-5
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18.8.19.1.4 (L2) Ensure 'Turn off handwriting recognition error
reporting' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 2 - Domain Controller
 Level 2 - Member Server
Description:
Turns off the handwriting recognition error reporting tool.
The handwriting recognition error reporting tool enables users to report errors
encountered in Tablet PC Input Panel. The tool generates error reports and transmits them
to Microsoft over a secure connection. Microsoft uses these error reports to improve
handwriting recognition in future versions of Windows.
The recommended state for this setting is: Enabled.
Rationale:
A person's handwriting is Personally Identifiable Information (PII), especially when it
comes to your signature. As such, it is unacceptable in many environments to automatically
upload PII to a website without explicit approval by the user.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Policies\Microsoft\Windows\HandwritingErrorReports:Prevent
HandwritingErrorReports
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Enabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\System\Internet Communication
Management\Internet Communication settings\Turn off handwriting recognition error
reporting
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Impact:
If you enable this policy, users cannot start the handwriting recognition error reporting
tool or send error reports to Microsoft.
Default Value:
Not Configured. If you do not configure this policy Tablet PC users can report handwriting
recognition errors to Microsoft.
References:
1. CCE-36203-8
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18.8.19.1.5 (L2) Ensure 'Turn off Internet Connection Wizard if URL
connection is referring to Microsoft.com' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 2 - Domain Controller
 Level 2 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting specifies whether the Internet Connection Wizard can connect to
Microsoft to download a list of Internet Service Providers (ISPs).
The recommended state for this setting is: Enabled.
Rationale:
In an Enterprise environment we want to lower the risk of a user unknowingly exposing
sensitive data.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Policies\Microsoft\Windows\Internet Connection
Wizard:ExitOnMSICW
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Enabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\System\Internet Communication
Management\Internet Communication settings\Turn off Internet Connection Wizard if URL
connection is referring to Microsoft.com
Impact:
If you enable this policy setting, the "Choose a list of Internet Service Providers" path in the
Internet Connection Wizard causes the wizard to exit. This prevents users from retrieving
the list of ISPs, which resides on Microsoft servers.
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Default Value:
Not Configured. If you disable or do not configure this policy setting, users can connect to
Microsoft to download a list of ISPs for their area.
References:
1. CCE-37163-3
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18.8.19.1.6 (L2) Ensure 'Turn off Internet download for Web publishing
and online ordering wizards' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 2 - Domain Controller
 Level 2 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting controls whether Windows will download a list of providers for the Web
publishing and online ordering wizards.
The recommended state for this setting is: Enabled.
Rationale:
Although the risk is minimal, enabling this setting will reduce the possibility of a user
unknowingly downloading malicious content through this feature.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Policies\Explorer\NoWebSe
rvices
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Enabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\System\Internet Communication
Management\Internet Communication settings\Turn off Internet download for Web
publishing and online ordering wizards
Impact:
If this policy setting is enabled, Windows is prevented from downloading providers; only
the service providers cached in the local registry will display.
Default Value:
Not configured
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References:
1. CCE-36096-6
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18.8.19.1.7 (L2) Ensure 'Turn off printing over HTTP' is set to 'Enabled'
(Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 2 - Domain Controller
 Level 2 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting allows you to disable the client computer's ability to print over HTTP,
which allows the computer to print to printers on the intranet as well as the Internet.
The recommended state for this setting is: Enabled.
Rationale:
Information that is transmitted over HTTP through this capability is not protected and can
be intercepted by malicious users. For this reason, it is not often used in enterprise
environments.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Policies\Microsoft\Windows NT\Printers\DisableHTTPPrinting
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Enabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\System\Internet Communication
Management\Internet Communication settings\Turn off printing over HTTP
Impact:
If you enable this policy setting, the client computer will not be able to print to Internet
printers over HTTP. This policy setting affects the client side of Internet printing only.
Regardless of how it is configured, a computer could act as an Internet Printing server and
make its shared printers available through HTTP.
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Default Value:
Not configured
References:
1. CCE-36920-7
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18.8.19.1.8 (L2) Ensure 'Turn off Registration if URL connection is
referring to Microsoft.com' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 2 - Domain Controller
 Level 2 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting specifies whether the Windows Registration Wizard connects to
Microsoft.com for online registration.
The recommended state for this setting is: Enabled.
Rationale:
Users in a corporate environment should not be registering their own copies of Windows,
providing their own PII in the process.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Policies\Microsoft\Windows\Registration Wizard
Control:NoRegistration
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Enabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\System\Internet Communication
Management\Internet Communication settings\Turn off Registration if URL connection is
referring to Microsoft.com
Impact:
If you enable this policy setting, it blocks users from connecting to Microsoft.com for online
registration and users cannot register their copy of Windows online.
Default Value:
Not Configured. If you disable or do not configure this policy setting, users can connect to
Microsoft.com to complete the online Windows Registration.
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References:
1. CCE-36352-3
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18.8.19.1.9 (L2) Ensure 'Turn off Search Companion content file updates'
is set to 'Enabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 2 - Domain Controller
 Level 2 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting specifies whether Search Companion should automatically download
content updates during local and Internet searches.
The recommended state for this setting is: Enabled.
Rationale:
There is a small risk that users will unknowingly reveal sensitive information because of
the topics they are searching for. This risk is very low because even if this setting is enabled
users still must submit search queries to the desired search engine in order to perform
searches.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Policies\Microsoft\SearchCompanion\DisableContentFileUpdat
es
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Enabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\System\Internet Communication
Management\Internet Communication settings\Turn off Search Companion content file
updates
Impact:
Internet searches will still send the search text and information about the search to
Microsoft and the chosen search provider. If you select Classic Search, the Search
Companion feature will be unavailable. You can select Classic Search by clicking Start,
Search, Change Preferences, and then Change Internet Search Behavior.
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Default Value:
Not configured
References:
1. CCE-36884-5
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18.8.19.1.10 (L2) Ensure 'Turn off the "Order Prints" picture task' is set
to 'Enabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 2 - Domain Controller
 Level 2 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting specifies whether the "Order Prints Online" task is available from
Picture Tasks in Windows folders.
The Order Prints Online Wizard is used to download a list of providers and allow users to
order prints online.
The recommended state for this setting is: Enabled.
Rationale:
In an Enterprise environment we want to lower the risk of a user unknowingly exposing
sensitive data.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Policies\Explorer:NoOnlin
ePrintsWizard
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Enabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\System\Internet Communication
Management\Internet Communication settings\Turn off the "Order Prints" picture task
Impact:
If you enable this policy setting, the task "Order Prints Online" is removed from Picture
Tasks in File Explorer folders.
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Default Value:
Not Configured. If you disable or do not configure this policy setting, the task is displayed.
References:
1. CCE-38275-4
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18.8.19.1.11 (L2) Ensure 'Turn off the "Publish to Web" task for files and
folders' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 2 - Domain Controller
 Level 2 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting specifies whether the tasks Publish this file to the Web, Publish this
folder to the Web, and Publish the selected items to the Web are available from File and
Folder Tasks in Windows folders.
The recommended state for this setting is: Enabled.
Rationale:
Users may publish confidential or sensitive information to a public service outside of the
control of the organization.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Policies\Explorer\NoPubli
shingWizard
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Enabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\System\Internet Communication
Management\Internet Communication settings\Turn off the "Publish to Web" task for
files and folders
Impact:
The Web Publishing wizard is used to download a list of providers and allow users to
publish content to the Web.
Default Value:
Not configured
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References:
1. CCE-37090-8
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18.8.19.1.12 (L2) Ensure 'Turn off the Windows Messenger Customer
Experience Improvement Program' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 2 - Domain Controller
 Level 2 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting specifies whether Windows Messenger can collect anonymous
information about how the Windows Messenger software and service is used.
The recommended state for this setting is: Enabled.
Rationale:
Large enterprise environments may not want to have information collected from managed
client computers.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Policies\Microsoft\Messenger\Client\CEIP
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Enabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\System\Internet Communication
Management\Internet Communication settings\Turn off the Windows Messenger Customer
Experience Improvement Program
Impact:
Microsoft uses information collected through the Customer Experience Improvement
Program to detect software flaws so that they can be corrected more quickly, enabling this
setting will reduce the amount of data Microsoft is able to gather for this purpose.
Default Value:
Not configured
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References:
1. CCE-36628-6
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18.8.19.1.13 (L2) Ensure 'Turn off Windows Customer Experience
Improvement Program' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 2 - Domain Controller
 Level 2 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting specifies whether Windows Messenger can collect anonymous
information about how the Windows Messenger software and service is used.
The recommended state for this setting is: Enabled.
Rationale:
Large enterprise environments may not want to have information collected from managed
client computers.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Policies\Microsoft\SQMClient\Windows:CEIPEnable
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Enabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\System\Internet Communication
Management\Internet Communication settings\Turn off Windows Customer Experience
Improvement Program
Impact:
Microsoft uses information collected through the Customer Experience Improvement
Program to detect software flaws so that they can be corrected more quickly, enabling this
setting will reduce the amount of data Microsoft is able to gather for this purpose.
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Default Value:
Not Configured If you do not configure this policy setting, users have the choice to opt in
and allow information to be collected.
References:
1. CCE-36174-1
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18.8.19.1.14 (L2) Ensure 'Turn off Windows Error Reporting' is set to
'Enabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 2 - Domain Controller
 Level 2 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting controls whether or not errors are reported to Microsoft.
Error Reporting is used to report information about a system or application that has failed
or has stopped responding and is used to improve the quality of the product.
The recommended state for this setting is: Enabled.
Rationale:
If a Windows Error occurs in a secure, managed corporate environment, the error should
be reported directly to IT staff for troubleshooting and remediation. There is no benefit to
the corporation to report these errors directly to Microsoft, and there is some risk of
unknowingly exposing sensitive data as part of the error.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Policies\Microsoft\Windows\Windows Error
Reporting:Disabled
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Enabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\System\Internet Communication
Management\Internet Communication settings\Turn off Windows Error Reporting
Impact:
If you enable this policy setting, users are not given the option to report errors.
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Default Value:
Not Configured. If you disable or do not configure this policy setting, the errors may be
reported to Microsoft via the Internet or to a corporate file share.
References:
1. CCE-35964-6
18.8.20 iSCSI
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
18.8.21 KDC
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
18.8.22 Kerberos
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
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18.8.23 Locale Services
This section contains recommendations for Locale Services settings.
18.8.23.1 (L2) Ensure 'Disallow copying of user input methods to the
system account for sign-in' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 2 - Domain Controller
 Level 2 - Member Server
Description:
This policy prevents automatic copying of user input methods to the system account for use
on the sign-in screen. The user is restricted to the set of input methods that are enabled in
the system account.
The recommended state for this setting is: Enabled.
Rationale:
This is a way to increase the security of the system account.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Policies\Microsoft\Control
Panel\International:BlockUserInputMethodsForSignIn
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Enabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\System\Locale
Services\Disallow copying of user input methods to the system account for sign-in
Impact:
If the policy is Enabled, then the user will get input methods enabled for the system
account on the sign-in page.
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Default Value:
Not Configured. If the policy is Disabled or Not Configured, then the user will be able to use
input methods enabled for their user account on the sign-in page.
References:
1. CCE-36343-2
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18.8.24 Logon
This section contains recommendations related to the logon process and lock screen.
18.8.24.1 (L1) Ensure 'Do not display network selection UI' is set to
'Enabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting allows you to control whether anyone can interact with available
networks UI on the logon screen.
The recommended state for this setting is: Enabled.
Rationale:
An unauthorized user could disconnect the PC from the network or can connect the PC to
other available networks without signing into Windows.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Policies\Microsoft\Windows\System\DontDisplayNetworkSelect
ionUI
Remediation:
To implement the recommended configuration state, set the following Group Policy setting
to Enabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\System\Logon\Do not display
network selection UI
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Impact:
If you enable this policy setting, the PC's network connectivity state cannot be changed
without signing into Windows.
If you disable or don't configure this policy setting, any user can disconnect the PC from the
network or can connect the PC to other available networks without signing into Windows.
References:
1. CCE-38353-9
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18.8.24.2 (L1) Ensure 'Do not enumerate connected users on domainjoined computers' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting prevents connected users from being enumerated on domain-joined
computers.
If you enable this policy setting, the Logon UI will not enumerate any connected users on
domain-joined computers.
If you disable or do not configure this policy setting, connected users will be enumerated
on domain-joined computers.
The recommended state for this setting is: Enabled.
Rationale:
A malicious user could use this feature to gather account names of other users, that
information could then be used in conjunction with other types of attacks such as guessing
passwords or social engineering. The value of this countermeasure is small because a user
with domain credentials could gather the same account information using other methods.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Policies\Microsoft\Windows\System\DontEnumerateConnectedUs
ers
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Enabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\System\Logon\Do not enumerate
connected users on domain-joined computers
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Impact:
The Logon UI will not enumerate any connected users on domain-joined computers.
Default Value:
Not configured
References:
1. CCE-37838-0
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18.8.24.3 (L1) Ensure 'Enumerate local users on domain-joined
computers' is set to 'Disabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting allows local users to be enumerated on domain-joined computers.
If you enable this policy setting, Logon UI will enumerate all local users on domain-joined
computers.
If you disable or do not configure this policy setting, the Logon UI will not enumerate local
users on domain-joined computers.
The recommended state for this setting is: Disabled.
Rationale:
A malicious user could use this feature to gather account names of other users, that
information could then be used in conjunction with other types of attacks such as guessing
passwords or social engineering. The value of this countermeasure is small because a user
with domain credentials could gather the same account information using other methods.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Policies\Microsoft\Windows\System\EnumerateLocalUsers
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Disabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\System\Logon\Enumerate local
users on domain-joined computers
Impact:
None - this is the default behavior.
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Default Value:
Not configured
References:
1. CCE-35894-5
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18.8.24.4 (L1) Ensure 'Turn off app notifications on the lock screen' is set
to 'Enabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting allows you to prevent app notifications from appearing on the lock
screen.
If you enable this policy setting, no app notifications are displayed on the lock screen.
If you disable or do not configure this policy setting, users can choose which apps display
notifications on the lock screen.
The recommended state for this setting is: Enabled.
Rationale:
App notifications might display sensitive business or personal data.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Policies\Microsoft\Windows\System:DisableLockScreenAppNoti
fications
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Enabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\System\Logon\Turn off app
notifications on the lock screen
Impact:
If you enable this policy setting, no app notifications are displayed on the lock screen.
If you disable or do not configure this policy setting, users can choose which apps display
notifications on the lock screen.
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Default Value:
Not configured
References:
1. CCE-35893-7
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18.8.24.5 (L1) Ensure 'Turn on convenience PIN sign-in' is set to
'Disabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting allows you to control whether a domain user can sign in using a
convenience PIN. In Windows 10, convenience PIN was replaced with Passport, which has
stronger security properties. To configure Passport for domain users, use the policies
under Computer configuration\Administrative Templates\Windows
Components\Microsoft Passport for Work.
If you enable this policy setting, a domain user can set up and sign in with a convenience
PIN.
If you disable or don't configure this policy setting, a domain user can't set up and use a
convenience PIN.
Note that the user's domain password will be cached in the system vault when using this
feature.
The recommended state for this setting is: Disabled.
Rationale:
A PIN is created from a much smaller selection of characters than a password, so in most
cases a PIN will be much less robust than a password.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Policies\Microsoft\Windows\System\AllowDomainPINLogon
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Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Disabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\System\Logon\Turn on
convenience PIN sign-in
Note: In older Microsoft Windows Administrative Templates, this setting was simply
named "Turn on PIN sign-in", but it was renamed as of the Windows 10 Release 1511
Administrative Templates.
Impact:
None - this is the default behavior.
Default Value:
Not configured
References:
1. CCE-37528-7
18.8.25 Mitigation Options
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
18.8.26 Net Logon
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
18.8.27 Performance Control Panel
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
The Group Policy settings contained within this section are provided by the Group Policy
template "PerfCenterCPL.admx/adml" that is included with the Microsoft Windows Vista,
2008, 7/2008R2 & 2012 Administrative Templates.
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18.8.28 Power Management
This section contains recommendations for Power Management settings.
18.8.28.1 Button Settings
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
18.8.28.2 Hard Disk Settings
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
18.8.28.3 Notification Settings
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
18.8.28.4 Sleep Settings
This section contains recommendations related to Power Management Sleep mode.
18.8.28.4.1 (L2) Ensure 'Require a password when a computer wakes
(on battery)' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 2 - Domain Controller
 Level 2 - Member Server
Description:
Specifies whether or not the user is prompted for a password when the system resumes
from sleep.
The recommended state for this setting is: Enabled.
Rationale:
Enabling this setting ensures that anyone who wakes an unattended computer from sleep
state will have to provide logon credentials before they can access the system.
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Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Policies\Microsoft\Power\PowerSettings\0e796bdb-100d-47d6a2d5-f7d2daa51f51\DCSettingIndex
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Enabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\System\Power Management\Sleep
Settings\Require a password when a computer wakes (on battery)
Impact:
If you enable this policy, or if it is not configured, the user is prompted for a password
when the system resumes from sleep.
If you disable this policy, the user is not prompted for a password when the system
resumes from sleep.
Default Value:
Not configured
References:
1. CCE-36881-1
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18.8.28.4.2 (L2) Ensure 'Require a password when a computer wakes
(plugged in)' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 2 - Domain Controller
 Level 2 - Member Server
Description:
Specifies whether or not the user is prompted for a password when the system resumes
from sleep.
The recommended state for this setting is: Enabled.
Rationale:
Enabling this setting ensures that anyone who wakes an unattended computer from sleep
state will have to provide logon credentials before they can access the system.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Policies\Microsoft\Power\PowerSettings\0e796bdb-100d-47d6a2d5-f7d2daa51f51\ACSettingIndex
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Enabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\System\Power Management\Sleep
Settings\Require a password when a computer wakes (plugged in)
Impact:
If you enable this policy, or if it is not configured, the user is prompted for a password
when the system resumes from sleep.
If you disable this policy, the user is not prompted for a password when the system
resumes from sleep.
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Default Value:
Not configured
References:
1. CCE-37066-8
18.8.29 Recovery
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
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18.8.30 Remote Assistance
This section contains recommendations related to Remote Assistance.
18.8.30.1 (L1) Ensure 'Configure Offer Remote Assistance' is set to
'Disabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting allows you to turn on or turn off Offer (Unsolicited) Remote Assistance
on this computer.
If you enable this policy setting, users on this computer can get help from their corporate
technical support staff using Offer (Unsolicited) Remote Assistance.
If you disable this policy setting, users on this computer cannot get help from their
corporate technical support staff using Offer (Unsolicited) Remote Assistance.
If you do not configure this policy setting, users on this computer cannot get help from
their corporate technical support staff using Offer (Unsolicited) Remote Assistance.
If you enable this policy setting, you have two ways to allow helpers to provide Remote
Assistance: "Allow helpers to only view the computer" or "Allow helpers to remotely
control the computer." When you configure this policy setting, you also specify the list of
users or user groups that are allowed to offer remote assistance.
To configure the list of helpers, click "Show." In the window that opens, you can enter the
names of the helpers. Add each user or group one by one. When you enter the name of the
helper user or user groups, use the following format:
<Domain Name>\<User Name> or
<Domain Name>\<Group Name>
If you enable this policy setting, you should also enable firewall exceptions to allow Remote
Assistance communications. The firewall exceptions required for Offer (Unsolicited)
Remote Assistance depend on the version of Windows you are running:
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Windows Vista and later:
Enable the Remote Assistance exception for the domain profile. The exception must
contain:
Port 135:TCP
%WINDIR%\System32\msra.exe
%WINDIR%\System32\raserver.exe
Windows XP with Service Pack 2 (SP2) and Windows XP Professional x64 Edition with
Service Pack 1 (SP1):
Port 135:TCP
%WINDIR%\PCHealth\HelpCtr\Binaries\Helpsvc.exe
%WINDIR%\PCHealth\HelpCtr\Binaries\Helpctr.exe
%WINDIR%\System32\Sessmgr.exe
For computers running Windows Server 2003 with Service Pack 1 (SP1)
Port 135:TCP
%WINDIR%\PCHealth\HelpCtr\Binaries\Helpsvc.exe
%WINDIR%\PCHealth\HelpCtr\Binaries\Helpctr.exe
Allow Remote Desktop Exception
The recommended state for this setting is: Disabled.
Rationale:
A user might be tricked and accept an unsolicited Remote Assistance offer from a malicious
user.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\policies\Microsoft\Windows NT\Terminal
Services\fAllowUnsolicited
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Disabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\System\Remote
Assistance\Configure Offer Remote Assistance
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Impact:
Help desk and support personnel will not be able to proactively offer assistance, although
they can still respond to user assistance requests.
Default Value:
Not configured
References:
1. CCE-36388-7
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18.8.30.2 (L1) Ensure 'Configure Solicited Remote Assistance' is set to
'Disabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting allows you to turn on or turn off Solicited (Ask for) Remote Assistance
on this computer.
If you enable this policy setting, users on this computer can use email or file transfer to ask
someone for help. Also, users can use instant messaging programs to allow connections to
this computer, and you can configure additional Remote Assistance settings.
If you disable this policy setting, users on this computer cannot use email or file transfer to
ask someone for help. Also, users cannot use instant messaging programs to allow
connections to this computer.
If you do not configure this policy setting, users can turn on or turn off Solicited (Ask for)
Remote Assistance themselves in System Properties in Control Panel. Users can also
configure Remote Assistance settings.
If you enable this policy setting, you have two ways to allow helpers to provide Remote
Assistance: "Allow helpers to only view the computer" or "Allow helpers to remotely
control the computer."
The "Maximum ticket time" policy setting sets a limit on the amount of time that a Remote
Assistance invitation created by using email or file transfer can remain open.
The "Select the method for sending email invitations" setting specifies which email
standard to use to send Remote Assistance invitations. Depending on your email program,
you can use either the Mailto standard (the invitation recipient connects through an
Internet link) or the SMAPI (Simple MAPI) standard (the invitation is attached to your
email message). This policy setting is not available in Windows Vista since SMAPI is the
only method supported.
If you enable this policy setting you should also enable appropriate firewall exceptions to
allow Remote Assistance communications.
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The recommended state for this setting is: Disabled.
Rationale:
There is slight risk that a rogue administrator will gain access to another user's desktop
session, however, they cannot connect to a user's computer unannounced or control it
without permission from the user. When an expert tries to connect, the user can still
choose to deny the connection or give the expert view-only privileges. The user must
explicitly click the Yes button to allow the expert to remotely control the workstation.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\policies\Microsoft\Windows NT\Terminal
Services\fAllowToGetHelp
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Disabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\System\Remote
Assistance\Configure Solicited Remote Assistance
Impact:
If you enable this policy, users on this computer can use e-mail or file transfer to ask
someone for help. Also, users can use instant messaging programs to allow connections to
this computer, and you can configure additional Remote Assistance settings.
If you disable this policy, users on this computer cannot use e-mail or file transfer to ask
someone for help. Also, users cannot use instant messaging programs to allow connections
to this computer.
If you don't configure this policy, users can enable or disable Solicited (Ask for) Remote
Assistance themselves in System Properties in Control Panel. Users can also configure
Remote Assistance settings.
Default Value:
Not configured
References:
1. CCE-37281-3
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18.8.31 Remote Procedure Call
This section contains recommendations related to Remote Procedure Call.
18.8.31.1 (L1) Ensure 'Enable RPC Endpoint Mapper Client
Authentication' is set to 'Enabled' (MS only) (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting controls whether RPC clients authenticate with the Endpoint Mapper
Service when the call they are making contains authentication information. The Endpoint
Mapper Service on computers running Windows NT4 (all service packs) cannot process
authentication information supplied in this manner. This policy setting can cause a specific
issue with 1-way forest trusts if it is applied to the trusting domain DCs (see Microsoft
KB3073942), so we do not recommend applying it to domain controllers.
If you disable this policy setting, RPC clients will not authenticate to the Endpoint Mapper
Service, but they will be able to communicate with the Endpoint Mapper Service on
Windows NT4 Server.
If you enable this policy setting, RPC clients will authenticate to the Endpoint Mapper
Service for calls that contain authentication information. Clients making such calls will not
be able to communicate with the Windows NT4 Server Endpoint Mapper Service.
If you do not configure this policy setting, it remains disabled. RPC clients will not
authenticate to the Endpoint Mapper Service, but they will be able to communicate with the
Windows NT4 Server Endpoint Mapper Service.
Note: This policy will not be applied until the system is rebooted.
The recommended state for this setting is: Enabled.
Rationale:
Anonymous access to RPC services could result in accidental disclosure of information to
unauthenticated users.
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Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Policies\Microsoft\Windows NT\Rpc\EnableAuthEpResolution
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Enabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\System\Remote Procedure
Call\Enable RPC Endpoint Mapper Client Authentication
Impact:
RPC clients will authenticate to the Endpoint Mapper Service for calls that contain
authentication information. Clients making such calls will not be able to communicate with
the Windows NT4 Server Endpoint Mapper Service.
Default Value:
Not configured
References:
1. CCE-37346-4
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18.8.31.2 (L2) Ensure 'Restrict Unauthenticated RPC clients' is set to
'Enabled: Authenticated' (MS only) (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 2 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting controls how the RPC server runtime handles unauthenticated RPC
clients connecting to RPC servers.
This policy setting impacts all RPC applications. In a domain environment this policy
setting should be used with caution as it can impact a wide range of functionality including
group policy processing itself. Reverting a change to this policy setting can require manual
intervention on each affected machine. This policy setting should never be applied to a
domain controller.
If you disable this policy setting, the RPC server runtime uses the value of "Authenticated"
on Windows Client, and the value of "None" on Windows Server versions that support this
policy setting.
If you do not configure this policy setting, it remains disabled. The RPC server runtime will
behave as though it was enabled with the value of "Authenticated" used for Windows Client
and the value of "None" used for Server SKUs that support this policy setting.
If you enable this policy setting, it directs the RPC server runtime to restrict
unauthenticated RPC clients connecting to RPC servers running on a machine. A client will
be considered an authenticated client if it uses a named pipe to communicate with the
server or if it uses RPC Security. RPC Interfaces that have specifically requested to be
accessible by unauthenticated clients may be exempt from this restriction, depending on
the selected value for this policy setting.
-- "None" allows all RPC clients to connect to RPC Servers running on the machine on which
the policy setting is applied.
-- "Authenticated" allows only authenticated RPC Clients (per the definition above) to
connect to RPC Servers running on the machine on which the policy setting is applied.
Exemptions are granted to interfaces that have requested them.
-- "Authenticated without exceptions" allows only authenticated RPC Clients (per the
definition above) to connect to RPC Servers running on the machine on which the policy
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setting is applied. No exceptions are allowed. This value has the potential to cause
serious problems and is not recommended.
Note: This policy setting will not be applied until the system is rebooted.
The recommended state for this setting is: Enabled: Authenticated.
Rationale:
Unauthenticated RPC communication can create a security vulnerability.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Policies\Microsoft\Windows NT\Rpc\RestrictRemoteClients
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Enabled:
Authenticated:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\System\Remote Procedure
Call\Restrict Unauthenticated RPC clients
Impact:
Only authenticated RPC Clients will be allowed to connect to RPC Servers running on the
machine on which the policy setting is applied. Exemptions are granted to interfaces that
have requested them.
Default Value:
Not configured
References:
1. CCE-36559-3
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18.8.32 Removable Storage Access
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
18.8.33 Scripts
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
18.8.34 Server Manager
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
18.8.35 Shutdown
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
18.8.36 Shutdown Options
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
18.8.37 System Restore
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
18.8.38 Troubleshooting and Diagnostics
This section contains recommendations related to Troubleshooting and Diagnostics.
18.8.38.1 Application Compatibility Diagnostics
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
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18.8.38.2 Corrupted File Recovery
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
18.8.38.3 Disk Diagnostic
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
18.8.38.4 Fault Tolerant Heap
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
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18.8.38.5 Microsoft Support Diagnostic Tool
This section contains recommendations related to the Microsoft Support Diagnostic Tool.
18.8.38.5.1 (L2) Ensure 'Microsoft Support Diagnostic Tool: Turn on
MSDT interactive communication with support provider' is set to
'Disabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 2 - Domain Controller
 Level 2 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting configures Microsoft Support Diagnostic Tool (MSDT) interactive
communication with the support provider. MSDT gathers diagnostic data for analysis by
support professionals.
The recommended state for this setting is: Disabled.
Rationale:
Due to privacy concerns, data should never be sent to any 3rd party since this data could
contain sensitive information.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Policies\Microsoft\Windows\ScriptedDiagnosticsProvider\Pol
icy:DisableQueryRemoteServer
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Disabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\System\Troubleshooting and
Diagnostics\Microsoft Support Diagnostic Tool\Microsoft Support Diagnostic Tool: Turn
on MSDT interactive communication with support provider
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Impact:
If you disable this policy setting, MSDT cannot run in support mode, and no data can be
collected or sent to the support provider.
Default Value:
Not Configured
References:
1. CCE-38161-6
18.8.38.6 MSI Corrupted File Recovery
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
18.8.38.7 Scheduled Maintenance
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
The Group Policy settings contained within this section are provided by the Group Policy
template "sdiagschd.admx/adml" that is included with the Microsoft Windows 7/2008R2,
8/2012, 8.1/2012R2 and Windows 10 Administrative Templates.
18.8.38.8 Scripted Diagnostics
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
18.8.38.9 Windows Boot Performance Diagnostics
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
18.8.38.10 Windows Memory Leak Diagnosis
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
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18.8.38.11 Windows Performance PerfTrack
This section contains recommendations related to Windows Performance PerfTrack.
18.8.38.11.1 (L2) Ensure 'Enable/Disable PerfTrack' is set to 'Disabled'
(Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 2 - Domain Controller
 Level 2 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting specifies whether to enable or disable tracking of responsiveness events.
The recommended state for this setting is: Disabled.
Rationale:
When enabled the aggregated data of a given event will be transmitted to Microsoft. The
option exists to restrict this feature for a specific user, set the consent level, and designate
specific programs for which error reports could be sent. However, centrally restricting the
ability to execute PerfTrack to limit the potential for unauthorized or undesired usage, data
leakage, or unintentional communications is highly recommended.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Policies\Microsoft\Windows\WDI\{9c5a40da-b965-4fc3-878188dd50a6299d}:ScenarioExecutionEnabled
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Disabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\System\Troubleshooting and
Diagnostics\Windows Performance PerfTrack\Enable/Disable PerfTrack
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Impact:
If you disable this policy setting, responsiveness events are not processed.
Default Value:
If you do not configure this policy setting, the DPS will enable Windows Performance
PerfTrack by default.
References:
1. CCE-36648-4
18.8.39 Trusted Platform Module Services
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
18.8.40 User Profiles
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
18.8.41 Windows File Protection
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
18.8.42 Windows HotStart
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
The Group Policy settings contained within this section are provided by the Group Policy
template "HotStart.admx/adml" that is included with the Microsoft Windows Vista, 2008,
7/2008R2 & 8/2012 Administrative Templates.
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18.8.43 Windows Time Service
This section contains recommendations related to the Windows Time Service.
18.8.43.1 Time Providers
This section contains recommendations related to Time Providers.
18.8.43.1.1 (L2) Ensure 'Enable Windows NTP Client' is set to 'Enabled'
(Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 2 - Domain Controller
 Level 2 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting specifies whether the Windows NTP Client is enabled. Enabling the
Windows NTP Client allows your computer to synchronize its computer clock with other
NTP servers. You might want to disable this service if you decide to use a third-party time
provider.
The recommended state for this setting is: Enabled.
Rationale:
A reliable and accurate account of time is important for a number of services and security
requirements, including but not limited to distributed applications, authentication services,
multi-user databases and logging services. The use of an NTP client (with secure operation)
establishes functional accuracy and is a focal point when reviewing security relevant
events
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Policies\Microsoft\W32Time\TimeProviders\NtpClient:Enabled
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Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Enabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\System\Windows Time
Service\Time Providers\Enable Windows NTP Client
Impact:
If you enable this policy setting, you can set the local computer clock to synchronize time
with NTP servers.
Default Value:
Not Configured. The local computer clock does not synchronize time with NTP servers.
References:
1. CCE-37843-0
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18.8.43.1.2 (L2) Ensure 'Enable Windows NTP Server' is set to 'Disabled'
(MS only) (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 2 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting allows you to specify whether the Windows NTP Server is enabled.
The recommended state for this setting is: Disabled.
Rationale:
The configuration of proper time synchronization is critically important in a corporate
environment both due to the sensitivity of Kerberos authentication timestamps and also to
ensure accurate security logging.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Policies\Microsoft\W32Time\TimeProviders\NtpServer:Enabled
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Disabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\System\Windows Time
Service\Time Providers\Enable Windows NTP Server
Impact:
If you disable or do not configure this policy setting, your computer cannot service NTP
requests from other computers.
Default Value:
Not Configured
References:
1. CCE-37319-1
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18.9 Windows Components
This section contains recommendations for Windows Component settings.
18.9.1 Active Directory Federation Services
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
The Group Policy settings contained within this section are provided by the Group Policy
template "adfs.admx/adml" that is included with the Microsoft Windows Vista, 2008,
7/2008R2 & 8/2012 Administrative Templates.
18.9.2 ActiveX Installer Service
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
18.9.3 Add features to Windows 8 / 8.1 / 10
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
The Group Policy settings contained within this section are provided by the Group Policy
template "WindowsAnytimeUpgrade.admx/adml" that is included with the Microsoft
Windows 8/2012, 8.1/2012R2 and Windows 10 Administrative Templates.
18.9.4 App Package Deployment
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
18.9.5 App Privacy
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
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18.9.6 App runtime
This section contains recommendations for App runtime settings.
18.9.6.1 (L1) Ensure 'Allow Microsoft accounts to be optional' is set to
'Enabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting lets you control whether Microsoft accounts are optional for Windows
Store apps that require an account to sign in. This policy only affects Windows Store apps
that support it. If you enable this policy setting, Windows Store apps that typically require a
Microsoft account to sign in will allow users to sign in with an enterprise account instead. If
you disable or do not configure this policy setting, users will need to sign in with a
Microsoft account.
The recommended state for this setting is: Enabled.
Rationale:
Enabling this setting allows an organization to use their enterprise user accounts instead of
using their Microsoft accounts when accessing Windows store apps. This provides the
organization with greater control over relevant credentials. Microsoft accounts cannot be
centrally managed and as such enterprise credential security policies cannot be applied to
them, which could put any information accessed by using Microsoft accounts at risk.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Policies\System:MSAOption
al
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Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Enabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\Windows Components\App
runtime\Allow Microsoft accounts to be optional
Impact:
Windows Store apps that typically require a Microsoft account to sign in will allow users to
sign in with an enterprise account instead.
References:
1. CCE-38354-7
18.9.7 Application Compatibility
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
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18.9.8 AutoPlay Policies
This section contains recommendations for AutoPlay policies.
18.9.8.1 (L1) Ensure 'Disallow Autoplay for non-volume devices' is set to
'Enabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting disallows AutoPlay for MTP devices like cameras or phones.
The recommended state for this setting is: Enabled.
Rationale:
An attacker could use this feature to launch a program to damage a client computer or data
on the computer.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Policies\Microsoft\Windows\Explorer:NoAutoplayfornonVolume
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Enabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\Windows Components\AutoPlay
Policies\Disallow Autoplay for non-volume devices
Impact:
If you enable this policy setting, AutoPlay is not allowed for MTP devices like cameras or
phones.
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Default Value:
Not Configured. If you disable or do not configure this policy setting, AutoPlay is enabled
for non-volume devices.
References:
1. CCE-37636-8
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18.9.8.2 (L1) Ensure 'Set the default behavior for AutoRun' is set to
'Enabled: Do not execute any autorun commands' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting sets the default behavior for Autorun commands. Autorun commands
are generally stored in autorun.inf files. They often launch the installation program or other
routines.
The recommended state for this setting is: Enabled: Do not execute any autorun
commands.
Rationale:
Prior to Windows Vista, when media containing an autorun command is inserted, the
system will automatically execute the program without user intervention. This creates a
major security concern as code may be executed without user's knowledge. The default
behavior starting with Windows Vista is to prompt the user whether autorun command is
to be run. The autorun command is represented as a handler in the Autoplay dialog.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Policies\Explorer:NoAutor
un
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Enabled:
Do not execute any autorun commands:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\Windows Components\AutoPlay
Policies\Set the default behavior for AutoRun
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Impact:
If you enable this policy setting, an Administrator can change the default Windows Vista or
later behavior for autorun to:
a) Completely disable autorun commands, or
b) Revert back to pre-Windows Vista behavior of automatically executing the autorun
command.
Default Value:
Not Configured
References:
1. CCE-38217-6
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18.9.8.3 (L1) Ensure 'Turn off Autoplay' is set to 'Enabled: All drives'
(Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
Autoplay starts to read from a drive as soon as you insert media in the drive, which causes
the setup file for programs or audio media to start immediately. An attacker could use this
feature to launch a program to damage the computer or data on the computer. You can
enable the Turn off Autoplay setting to disable the Autoplay feature. Autoplay is disabled
by default on some removable drive types, such as floppy disk and network drives, but not
on CD-ROM drives.
Note: You cannot use this policy setting to enable Autoplay on computer drives in which it
is disabled by default, such as floppy disk and network drives.
The recommended state for this setting is: Enabled: All drives.
Rationale:
An attacker could use this feature to launch a program to damage a client computer or data
on the computer.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Policies\Explorer\NoDrive
TypeAutoRun
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Enabled:
All drives:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\Windows Components\AutoPlay
Policies\Turn off Autoplay
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Impact:
Users will have to manually launch setup or installation programs that are provided on
removable media.
Default Value:
Not configured
References:
1. CCE-36875-3
18.9.9 Backup
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
The Group Policy settings contained within this section are provided by the Group Policy
template "WindowsBackup.admx/adml" that is included with the Microsoft Windows Vista,
2008, 7/2008R2, 8/2012 and 8.1/2012R2 Administrative Templates, or the Group Policy
template "UserDataBackup.admx/adml" included with the Microsoft Windows 10
Administrative Templates.
18.9.10 Biometrics
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
18.9.11 BitLocker Drive Encryption
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
18.9.12 Cloud Content
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
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18.9.13 Credential User Interface
This section contains recommendations related to the Credential User Interface.
18.9.13.1 (L1) Ensure 'Do not display the password reveal button' is set
to 'Enabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting allows you to configure the display of the password reveal button in
password entry user experiences.
The recommended state for this setting is: Enabled.
Rationale:
This is a useful feature when entering a long and complex password, especially when using
a touchscreen. The potential risk is that someone else may see your password while
surreptitiously observing your screen.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Policies\Microsoft\Windows\CredUI:DisablePasswordReveal
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Enabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\Windows Components\Credential
User Interface\Do not display the password reveal button
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Impact:
If you enable this policy setting the password reveal button will not be displayed after a
user types a password in the password entry text box. If you disable or do not configure
this policy setting the password reveal button will be displayed after a user types a
password in the password entry text box. The policy applies to all Windows components
and applications that use the Windows system controls including Internet Explorer.
Default Value:
By default the password reveal button is displayed after a user types a password in the
password entry text box. To display the password click the password reveal button.
References:
1. CCE-37534-5
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18.9.13.2 (L1) Ensure 'Enumerate administrator accounts on elevation'
is set to 'Disabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
By default, all administrator accounts are displayed when you attempt to elevate a running
application.
The recommended state for this setting is: Disabled.
Rationale:
Users could see the list of administrator accounts, making it slightly easier for a malicious
user who has logged onto a console session to try to crack the passwords of those accounts.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Policies\CredUI\Enumerate
Administrators
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Disabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\Windows Components\Credential
User Interface\Enumerate administrator accounts on elevation
Impact:
If you enable this policy setting, all local administrator accounts on the machine will be
displayed so the user can choose one and enter the correct password. If you disable this
policy setting, users will be required to always type in a username and password to elevate.
Default Value:
Disabled
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References:
1. CCE-36512-2
18.9.14 Data Collection and Preview Builds
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
18.9.15 Delivery Optimization
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
The Group Policy settings contained within this section are provided by the Group Policy
template "DeliveryOptimization.admx/adml" that is included with the Microsoft Windows
10 Administrative Templates.
18.9.16 Desktop Gadgets
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
18.9.17 Desktop Window Manager
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
18.9.18 Device and Driver Compatibility
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
18.9.19 Device Registration (formerly Workplace Join)
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
The Group Policy settings contained within this section are provided by the Group Policy
template "WorkplaceJoin.admx/adml" that is included with the Microsoft Windows 10
Administrative Templates.
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18.9.20 Digital Locker
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
18.9.21 Edge UI
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
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18.9.22 EMET
This section contains recommendations for configuring Microsoft Enhanced Mitigation
Experience Toolkit (EMET).
The Group Policy settings contained within this section are provided by the Group Policy
template "EMET.admx/adml" that is included with Microsoft EMET.
18.9.22.1 (L1) Ensure 'EMET 5.5' or higher is installed (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
The Enhanced Mitigation Experience Toolkit (EMET) is free, supported, software
developed by Microsoft that allows an enterprise to apply exploit mitigations to
applications that run on Windows.
Rationale:
EMET mitigations help reduce the reliability of exploits that target vulnerable software
running on Windows
Audit:
Navigate to Control Panel\Program\Programs and Features and confirm "EMET 5.5" or
higher is listed in the Name column.
Remediation:
Install EMET 5.5 or higher.
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18.9.22.2 (L1) Ensure 'Default Action and Mitigation Settings' is set to
'Enabled' (plus subsettings) (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This setting configures the default action after detection and advanced ROP mitigation.
The recommended state for this setting is:
Default Action and Mitigation Settings - Enabled
Deep Hooks - Enabled
Anti Detours - Enabled
Banned Functions - Enabled
Exploit Action - User Configured
Rationale:
These advanced mitigations for ROP mitigations apply to all configured software in EMET.
Deep Hooks protects critical APIs and the subsequent lower level APIs used by the top
level critical API.
Anti Detours renders ineffective exploits that evade hooks by executing a copy of the
hooked function prologue and then jump to the function past the prologue.
Banned Functions will block calls to ntdll!LdrHotPatchRoutine to mitigate potential
exploits abusing the API.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Policies\Microsoft\EMET\SysSettings:AntiDetours
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Policies\Microsoft\EMET\SysSettings:BannedFunctions
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Policies\Microsoft\EMET\SysSettings:DeepHooks
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Policies\Microsoft\EMET\SysSettings:ExploitAction
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Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Enabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\Windows
Components\EMET\Default Action and Mitigation Settings
Note: This Group Policy path does not exist by default. An additional Group Policy template
(EMET.admx/adml) is required - it is included with Microsoft Enhanced Mitigation
Experience Toolkit (EMET).
Default Value:
Not Configured
References:
1. CCE-38427-1
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18.9.22.3 (L1) Ensure 'Default Protections for Internet Explorer' is set to
'Enabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This settings determine if EMET mitigations are applied to Internet Explorer.
The recommended state for this setting is: Enabled.
Rationale:
Applying EMET mitigations to Internet Explorer will help reduce the reliability of exploits
that target it.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Policies\Microsoft\EMET\Defaults\IE
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Enabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\Windows
Components\EMET\Default Protections for Internet Explorer
Note: This Group Policy path does not exist by default. An additional Group Policy template
(EMET.admx/adml) is required - it is included with Microsoft Enhanced Mitigation
Experience Toolkit (EMET).
References:
1. CCE-36570-0
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18.9.22.4 (L1) Ensure 'Default Protections for Popular Software' is set to
'Enabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This settings determine if EMET mitigations are applied to other popular software.
The recommended state for this setting is: Enabled.
Rationale:
Applying EMET mitigations to popular software packages will help reduce the reliability of
exploits that target them.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by many registry keys (for the various
popular software that EMET supports) under the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Policies\Microsoft\EMET\Defaults
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Enabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\Windows
Components\EMET\Default Protections for Popular Explorer
Note: This Group Policy path does not exist by default. An additional Group Policy template
(EMET.admx/adml) is required - it is included with Microsoft Enhanced Mitigation
Experience Toolkit (EMET).
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18.9.22.5 (L1) Ensure 'Default Protections for Recommended Software'
is set to 'Enabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This settings determine if recommended EMET mitigations are applied to WordPad,
applications that are part of the Microsoft Office suite, Adobe Acrobat, Adobe Reader, and
Oracle Java.
The recommended state for this setting is: Enabled.
Rationale:
Applying EMET mitigations to Internet Explorer will help reduce the reliability of exploits
that target it.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by many registry keys (for the various
recommended software that EMET supports) under the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Policies\Microsoft\EMET\Defaults
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Enabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\Windows
Components\EMET\Default Protections for Recommended Software
Note: This Group Policy path does not exist by default. An additional Group Policy template
(EMET.admx/adml) is required - it is included with Microsoft Enhanced Mitigation
Experience Toolkit (EMET).
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18.9.22.6 (L1) Ensure 'System ASLR' is set to 'Enabled: Application OptIn' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This setting determines how applications become enrolled in address space layout
randomization (ASLR).
The recommended state for this setting is: Enabled: Application Opt-In.
Rationale:
ASLR reduces the predictability of process memory, which in-turn helps reduce the
reliability of exploits targeting memory corruption vulnerabilities.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Policies\Microsoft\EMET\SysSettings\ASLR
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Enabled:
Application Opt-In:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\Windows
Components\EMET\System ASLR
Note: This Group Policy path does not exist by default. An additional Group Policy template
(EMET.admx/adml) is required - it is included with Microsoft Enhanced Mitigation
Experience Toolkit (EMET).
References:
1. CCE-38437-0
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18.9.22.7 (L1) Ensure 'System DEP' is set to 'Enabled: Application OptOut' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This setting determines how applications become enrolled in data execution protection
(DEP).
The recommended state for this setting is: Enabled: Application Opt-Out.
Rationale:
DEP marks pages of application memory as non-executable, which reduces a given exploit's
ability to run attacker-controlled code.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Policies\Microsoft\EMET\SysSettings\DEP
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Enabled:
Application Opt-Out:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\Windows
Components\EMET\System DEP
Note: This Group Policy path does not exist by default. An additional Group Policy template
(EMET.admx/adml) is required - it is included with Microsoft Enhanced Mitigation
Experience Toolkit (EMET).
References:
1. CCE-38438-8
540 | P a g e
18.9.22.8 (L1) Ensure 'System SEHOP' is set to 'Enabled: Application OptOut' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This setting determines how applications become enrolled in structured exception handler
overwrite protection (SEHOP).
The recommended state for this setting is: Enabled: Application Opt-Out.
Rationale:
When a software component suffers from a memory corruption vulnerability, an exploit
may be able to overwrite memory that contains data structures that control how the
software handles exceptions. By corrupting these structures in a controlled manner, an
exploit may be able to execute arbitrary code. SEHOP verifies the integrity of those
structures before they are used to handle exceptions, which reduces the reliability of
exploits that leverage structured exception handler overwrites.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Policies\Microsoft\EMET\SysSettings\SEHOP
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Enabled:
Application Opt-Out:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\Windows
Components\EMET\System SEHOP
Note: This Group Policy path does not exist by default. An additional Group Policy template
(EMET.admx/adml) is required - it is included with Microsoft Enhanced Mitigation
Experience Toolkit (EMET).
541 | P a g e
References:
1. CCE-38439-6
18.9.23 Event Forwarding
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
542 | P a g e
18.9.24 Event Log Service
This section contains recommendations for configuring the Event Log Service.
18.9.24.1 Application
This section contains recommendations for configuring the Application Event Log.
18.9.24.1.1 (L1) Ensure 'Application: Control Event Log behavior when
the log file reaches its maximum size' is set to 'Disabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting controls Event Log behavior when the log file reaches its maximum size.
If you enable this policy setting and a log file reaches its maximum size, new events are not
written to the log and are lost. If you disable or do not configure this policy setting and a log
file reaches its maximum size, new events overwrite old events.
The recommended state for this setting is: Disabled.
Note: Old events may or may not be retained according to the "Backup log automatically
when full"• policy setting.
Rationale:
If new events are not recorded it may be difficult or impossible to determine the root cause
of system problems or the unauthorized activities of malicious users.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Policies\Microsoft\Windows\EventLog\Application\Retention
543 | P a g e
Remediation:
To implement the recommended configuration state, set the following Group Policy setting
to Disabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\Windows Components\Event Log
Service\Application\Control Event Log behavior when the log file reaches its maximum
size
Impact:
If you enable this policy setting and a log file reaches its maximum size, new events are not
written to the log and are lost.
If you disable or do not configure this policy setting and a log file reaches its maximum size,
new events overwrite old events.
Default Value:
Disabled
References:
1. CCE-37775-4
544 | P a g e
18.9.24.1.2 (L1) Ensure 'Application: Specify the maximum log file size
(KB)' is set to 'Enabled: 32,768 or greater' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting specifies the maximum size of the log file in kilobytes. If you enable this
policy setting, you can configure the maximum log file size to be between 1 megabyte
(1,024 kilobytes) and 2 terabytes (2,147,483,647 kilobytes) in kilobyte increments. If you
disable or do not configure this policy setting, the maximum size of the log file will be set to
the locally configured value. This value can be changed by the local administrator using the
Log Properties dialog and it defaults to 20 megabytes.
The recommended state for this setting is: Enabled: 32,768 or greater.
Rationale:
If events are not recorded it may be difficult or impossible to determine the root cause of
system problems or the unauthorized activities of malicious users.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Policies\Microsoft\Windows\EventLog\Application\MaxSize
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following Group Policy setting
to Enabled: 32,768 or greater:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\Windows Components\Event Log
Service\Application\Specify the maximum log file size (KB)
545 | P a g e
Impact:
When event logs fill to capacity, they will stop recording information unless the retention
method for each is set so that the computer will overwrite the oldest entries with the most
recent ones. To mitigate the risk of loss of recent data, you can configure the retention
method so that older events are overwritten as needed.
The consequence of this configuration is that older events will be removed from the logs.
Attackers can take advantage of such a configuration, because they can generate a large
number of extraneous events to overwrite any evidence of their attack. These risks can be
somewhat reduced if you automate the archival and backup of event log data.
Ideally, all specifically monitored events should be sent to a server that uses Microsoft
System Center Operations Manager (SCOM) or some other automated monitoring tool.
Such a configuration is particularly important because an attacker who successfully
compromises a server could clear the Security log. If all events are sent to a monitoring
server, then you will be able to gather forensic information about the attacker's activities.
Default Value:
20,480 KB
References:
1. CCE-37948-7
546 | P a g e
18.9.24.2 Security
This section contains recommendations for configuring the Security Event Log.
18.9.24.2.1 (L1) Ensure 'Security: Control Event Log behavior when the
log file reaches its maximum size' is set to 'Disabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting controls Event Log behavior when the log file reaches its maximum size.
If you enable this policy setting and a log file reaches its maximum size, new events are not
written to the log and are lost.
If you disable or do not configure this policy setting and a log file reaches its maximum size,
new events overwrite old events.
The recommended state for this setting is: Disabled.
Note: Old events may or may not be retained according to the "Backup log automatically
when full"• policy setting.
Rationale:
If new events are not recorded it may be difficult or impossible to determine the root cause
of system problems or the unauthorized activities of malicious users.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Policies\Microsoft\Windows\EventLog\Security\Retention
547 | P a g e
Remediation:
To implement the recommended configuration state, set the following Group Policy setting
to Disabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\Windows Components\Event Log
Service\Security\Control Event Log behavior when the log file reaches its maximum size
Impact:
If you enable this policy setting and a log file reaches its maximum size, new events are not
written to the log and are lost.
If you disable or do not configure this policy setting and a log file reaches its maximum size,
new events overwrite old events.
Default Value:
Disabled
References:
1. CCE-37145-0
548 | P a g e
18.9.24.2.2 (L1) Ensure 'Security: Specify the maximum log file size (KB)'
is set to 'Enabled: 196,608 or greater' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting specifies the maximum size of the log file in kilobytes. If you enable this
policy setting, you can configure the maximum log file size to be between 1 megabyte
(1,024 kilobytes) and 2 terabytes (2,147,483,647 kilobytes) in kilobyte increments. If you
disable or do not configure this policy setting, the maximum size of the log file will be set to
the locally configured value. This value can be changed by the local administrator using the
Log Properties dialog and it defaults to 20 megabytes.
The recommended state for this setting is: Enabled: 196,608 or greater.
Rationale:
If events are not recorded it may be difficult or impossible to determine the root cause of
system problems or the unauthorized activities of malicious users.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Policies\Microsoft\Windows\EventLog\Security\MaxSize
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following Group Policy setting
to Enabled: 196,608 or greater:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\Windows Components\Event Log
Service\Security\Specify the maximum log file size (KB)
549 | P a g e
Impact:
When event logs fill to capacity, they will stop recording information unless the retention
method for each is set so that the computer will overwrite the oldest entries with the most
recent ones. To mitigate the risk of loss of recent data, you can configure the retention
method so that older events are overwritten as needed.
The consequence of this configuration is that older events will be removed from the logs.
Attackers can take advantage of such a configuration, because they can generate a large
number of extraneous events to overwrite any evidence of their attack. These risks can be
somewhat reduced if you automate the archival and backup of event log data.
Ideally, all specifically monitored events should be sent to a server that uses Microsoft
System Center Operations Manager (SCOM) or some other automated monitoring tool.
Such a configuration is particularly important because an attacker who successfully
compromises a server could clear the Security log. If all events are sent to a monitoring
server, then you will be able to gather forensic information about the attacker's activities.
Default Value:
20,480 KB
References:
1. CCE-37695-4
550 | P a g e
18.9.24.3 Setup
This section contains recommendations for configuring the Setup Event Log.
18.9.24.3.1 (L1) Ensure 'Setup: Control Event Log behavior when the log
file reaches its maximum size' is set to 'Disabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting controls Event Log behavior when the log file reaches its maximum size.
If you enable this policy setting and a log file reaches its maximum size, new events are not
written to the log and are lost.
If you disable or do not configure this policy setting and a log file reaches its maximum size,
new events overwrite old events.
The recommended state for this setting is: Disabled.
Note: Old events may or may not be retained according to the "Backup log automatically
when full"• policy setting.
Rationale:
If new events are not recorded it may be difficult or impossible to determine the root cause
of system problems or the unauthorized activities of malicious users.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Policies\Microsoft\Windows\EventLog\Setup\Retention
551 | P a g e
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following Group Policy setting
to Disabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\Windows Components\Event Log
Service\Setup\Control Event Log behavior when the log file reaches its maximum size
Impact:
If you enable this policy setting and a log file reaches its maximum size, new events are not
written to the log and are lost.
If you disable or do not configure this policy setting and a log file reaches its maximum size,
new events overwrite old events.
Default Value:
Disabled
References:
1. CCE-38276-2
552 | P a g e
18.9.24.3.2 (L1) Ensure 'Setup: Specify the maximum log file size (KB)' is
set to 'Enabled: 32,768 or greater' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting specifies the maximum size of the log file in kilobytes. If you enable this
policy setting, you can configure the maximum log file size to be between 1 megabyte
(1,024 kilobytes) and 2 terabytes (2,147,483,647 kilobytes) in kilobyte increments. If you
disable or do not configure this policy setting, the maximum size of the log file will be set to
the locally configured value. This value can be changed by the local administrator using the
Log Properties dialog and it defaults to 20 megabytes.
The recommended state for this setting is: Enabled: 32,768 or greater.
Rationale:
If events are not recorded it may be difficult or impossible to determine the root cause of
system problems or the unauthorized activities of malicious users
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Policies\Microsoft\Windows\EventLog\Setup\MaxSize
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following Group Policy setting
to Enabled: 32,768 or greater:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\Windows Components\Event Log
Service\Setup\Specify the maximum log file size (KB)
553 | P a g e
Impact:
When event logs fill to capacity, they will stop recording information unless the retention
method for each is set so that the computer will overwrite the oldest entries with the most
recent ones. To mitigate the risk of loss of recent data, you can configure the retention
method so that older events are overwritten as needed.
The consequence of this configuration is that older events will be removed from the logs.
Attackers can take advantage of such a configuration, because they can generate a large
number of extraneous events to overwrite any evidence of their attack. These risks can be
somewhat reduced if you automate the archival and backup of event log data.
Ideally, all specifically monitored events should be sent to a server that uses Microsoft
System Center Operations Manager (SCOM) or some other automated monitoring tool.
Such a configuration is particularly important because an attacker who successfully
compromises a server could clear the Security log. If all events are sent to a monitoring
server, then you will be able to gather forensic information about the attacker's activities.
Default Value:
20,480 KB
References:
1. CCE-37526-1
554 | P a g e
18.9.24.4 System
This section contains recommendations for configuring the System Event Log.
18.9.24.4.1 (L1) Ensure 'System: Control Event Log behavior when the
log file reaches its maximum size' is set to 'Disabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting controls Event Log behavior when the log file reaches its maximum size.
If you enable this policy setting and a log file reaches its maximum size, new events are not
written to the log and are lost.
If you disable or do not configure this policy setting and a log file reaches its maximum size,
new events overwrite old events.
The recommended state for this setting is: Disabled.
Note: Old events may or may not be retained according to the "Backup log automatically
when full"• policy setting.
Rationale:
If new events are not recorded it may be difficult or impossible to determine the root cause
of system problems or the unauthorized activities of malicious users.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Policies\Microsoft\Windows\EventLog\System\Retention
555 | P a g e
Remediation:
To implement the recommended configuration state, set the following Group Policy setting
to Disabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\Windows Components\Event Log
Service\System\Control Event Log behavior when the log file reaches its maximum size
Impact:
If you enable this policy setting and a log file reaches its maximum size, new events are not
written to the log and are lost.
If you disable or do not configure this policy setting and a log file reaches its maximum size,
new events overwrite old events.
Default Value:
Disabled
References:
1. CCE-36160-0
556 | P a g e
18.9.24.4.2 (L1) Ensure 'System: Specify the maximum log file size (KB)'
is set to 'Enabled: 32,768 or greater' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting specifies the maximum size of the log file in kilobytes. If you enable this
policy setting, you can configure the maximum log file size to be between 1 megabyte
(1,024 kilobytes) and 2 terabytes (2,147,483,647 kilobytes) in kilobyte increments. If you
disable or do not configure this policy setting, the maximum size of the log file will be set to
the locally configured value. This value can be changed by the local administrator using the
Log Properties dialog and it defaults to 20 megabytes.
The recommended state for this setting is: Enabled: 32,768 or greater.
Rationale:
If events are not recorded it may be difficult or impossible to determine the root cause of
system problems or the unauthorized activities of malicious users
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Policies\Microsoft\Windows\EventLog\System\MaxSize
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following Group Policy setting
to Enabled: 32,768 or greater:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\Windows Components\Event Log
Service\System\Specify the maximum log file size (KB)
557 | P a g e
Impact:
When event logs fill to capacity, they will stop recording information unless the retention
method for each is set so that the computer will overwrite the oldest entries with the most
recent ones. To mitigate the risk of loss of recent data, you can configure the retention
method so that older events are overwritten as needed.
The consequence of this configuration is that older events will be removed from the logs.
Attackers can take advantage of such a configuration, because they can generate a large
number of extraneous events to overwrite any evidence of their attack. These risks can be
somewhat reduced if you automate the archival and backup of event log data.
Ideally, all specifically monitored events should be sent to a server that uses Microsoft
System Center Operations Manager (SCOM) or some other automated monitoring tool.
Such a configuration is particularly important because an attacker who successfully
compromises a server could clear the Security log. If all events are sent to a monitoring
server, then you will be able to gather forensic information about the attacker's activities.
Default Value:
20,480 KB
References:
1. CCE-36092-5
558 | P a g e
18.9.25 Event Logging
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
The Group Policy settings contained within this section are provided by the Group Policy
template "eventlogging.admx/adml" that is included with the Microsoft Windows 10
Administrative Templates.
18.9.26 Event Viewer
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
18.9.27 Family Safety
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
559 | P a g e
18.9.28 File Explorer
This section contains recommendations to control the availability of options such as menu
items and tabs in dialog boxes.
18.9.28.1 Previous Versions
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
18.9.28.2 (L1) Ensure 'Configure Windows SmartScreen' is set to
'Enabled: Require approval from an administrator before running
downloaded unknown software' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting allows you to manage the behavior of Windows SmartScreen. Windows
SmartScreen helps keep PCs safer by warning users before running unrecognized programs
downloaded from the Internet. Some information is sent to Microsoft about files and
programs run on PCs with this feature enabled.
If you enable this policy setting, Windows SmartScreen behavior may be controlled by
setting one of the following options:



Require approval from an administrator before running downloaded unknown
software
Give user a warning before running downloaded unknown software
Turn off SmartScreen
If you disable or do not configure this policy setting, Windows SmartScreen behavior is
managed by administrators on the PC by using Windows SmartScreen Settings in Action
Center.
The recommended state for this setting is: Enabled: Require approval from an
administrator before running downloaded unknown software.
560 | P a g e
Rationale:
Windows SmartScreen helps keep PCs safer by warning users before running unrecognized
programs downloaded from the Internet. However, due to the fact that some information is
sent to Microsoft about files and programs run on PCs some organizations may prefer to
disable it.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Policies\Microsoft\Windows\System\EnableSmartScreen
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following Group Policy setting
to Enabled: Require approval from an administrator before running downloaded
unknown software:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\Windows Components\File
Explorer\Configure Windows SmartScreen
Impact:
Only administrators will be able to run unrecognized programs downloaded from the
Internet. If users with a standard account try, they won't be able to unless they get an
administrator to authorize it.
Default Value:
Not configured
References:
1. CCE-35859-8
561 | P a g e
18.9.28.3 (L1) Ensure 'Turn off Data Execution Prevention for Explorer' is
set to 'Disabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
Disabling data execution prevention can allow certain legacy plug-in applications to
function without terminating Explorer.
The recommended state for this setting is: Disabled.
Rationale:
Data Execution Prevention is an important security feature supported by Explorer that
helps to limit the impact of certain types of malware.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Policies\Microsoft\Windows\Explorer\NoDataExecutionPrevent
ion
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following Group Policy setting
to Disabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\Windows Components\File
Explorer\Turn off Data Execution Prevention for Explorer
Impact:
Enabling this policy setting may allow certain legacy plug-in applications to function.
Disabling this policy setting will ensure that Data Execution Prevention blocks certain
types of malware from exploiting Explorer.
562 | P a g e
Default Value:
Not configured
References:
1. CCE-37809-1
563 | P a g e
18.9.28.4 (L1) Ensure 'Turn off heap termination on corruption' is set to
'Disabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
Legacy plug-in applications may continue to function when a File Explorer session has
become corrupt. Disabling this feature will prevent this.
The recommended state for this setting is: Disabled.
Rationale:
Allowing an application to function after its session has become corrupt increases the risk
posture to the system.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Policies\Microsoft\Windows\Explorer:NoHeapTerminationOnCor
ruption
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following Group Policy setting
to Disabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\Windows Components\File
Explorer\Turn off heap termination on corruption
Impact:
Disabling heap termination on corruption can allow certain legacy plug-in applications to
function without terminating Explorer immediately although Explorer may still terminate
unexpectedly later.
564 | P a g e
Default Value:
Default value is not configured.
References:
1. CCE-36660-9
565 | P a g e
18.9.28.5 (L1) Ensure 'Turn off shell protocol protected mode' is set to
'Disabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting allows you to configure the amount of functionality that the shell
protocol can have. When using the full functionality of this protocol applications can open
folders and launch files. The protected mode reduces the functionality of this protocol
allowing applications to only open a limited set of folders. Applications are not able to open
files with this protocol when it is in the protected mode. It is recommended to leave this
protocol in the protected mode to increase the security of Windows.
The recommended state for this setting is: Disabled.
Rationale:
Limiting the opening of files and folders to a limited set reduces the attack surface of the
system.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Policies\Explorer:PreXPSP
2ShellProtocolBehavior
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following Group Policy
setting to Disabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\Windows Components\File
Explorer\Turn off shell protocol protected mode
566 | P a g e
Impact:
If you enable this policy setting the protocol is fully enabled allowing the opening of folders
and files. If you disable this policy setting the protocol is in the protected mode allowing
applications to only open a limited set of folders.
Default Value:
If you do not configure this policy setting the protocol is in the protected mode allowing
applications to only open a limited set of folders.
References:
1. CCE-36809-2
567 | P a g e
18.9.29 File History
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
18.9.30 Game Explorer
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
18.9.31 HomeGroup
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
18.9.32 Import Video
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
The Group Policy settings contained within this section are provided by the Group Policy
template "CaptureWizard.admx/adml" that is included with the Microsoft Windows Vista &
2008 Administrative Templates.
18.9.33 Internet Explorer
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
18.9.34 Internet Information Services
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
568 | P a g e
18.9.35 Location and Sensors
This section contains settings for Locations and Sensors.
18.9.35.1 (L2) Ensure 'Turn off location' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 2 - Domain Controller
 Level 2 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting turns off the location feature for this computer.
The recommended state for this setting is: Enabled.
Rationale:
This setting affects the location feature (e.g. GPS or other location tracking). From a
security perspective, it’s not a good idea to reveal your location to software in most cases,
but there are legitimate uses, such as mapping software.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Policies\Microsoft\Windows\LocationAndSensors:DisableLocat
ion
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Enabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\Windows Components\Location
and Sensors\Turn off location
Impact:
If you enable this policy setting, the location feature is turned off, and all programs on this
computer are prevented from using location information from the location feature.
569 | P a g e
Default Value:
Not Configured
References:
1. CCE-36886-0
570 | P a g e
18.9.36 Maintenance Scheduler
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
18.9.37 Maps
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
The Group Policy settings contained within this section are provided by the Group Policy
template "WinMaps.admx/adml" that is included with the Microsoft Windows 10 Release
1511 Administrative Templates.
18.9.38 Microsoft Edge
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
18.9.39 Microsoft Passport for Work
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
The Group Policy settings contained within this section are provided by the Group Policy
template "passport.admx/adml" that is included with the Microsoft Windows 10
Administrative Templates.
18.9.40 NetMeeting
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
18.9.41 Network Access Protection
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
The Group Policy settings contained within this section are provided by the Group Policy
template "NAPXPQec.admx/adml" that is included with the Microsoft Windows 2008,
7/2008R2, 8/2012 & 8.1/2012R2 Administrative Templates.
571 | P a g e
18.9.42 Network Projector
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
18.9.43 OneDrive
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
18.9.44 Online Assistance
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
18.9.45 Password Synchronization
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
The Group Policy settings contained within this section are provided by the Group Policy
template "PswdSync.admx/adml" that is included with the Microsoft Windows Vista, 2008,
7/2008R2, 8/2012 & 8.1/2012R2 Administrative Templates.
18.9.46 Portable Operating System
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
18.9.47 Presentation Settings
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
572 | P a g e
18.9.48 Remote Desktop Services (formerly Terminal Services)
This section contains recommendations related to Remote Desktop Services (formerly
Terminal Services).
18.9.48.1 RD Licensing
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
18.9.48.2 Remote Desktop Connection Client
This section contains recommendations for the Remote Desktop Connection Client.
18.9.48.2.1 RemoteFX USB Device Redirection
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
18.9.48.2.2 (L1) Ensure 'Do not allow passwords to be saved' is set to
'Enabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting helps prevent Remote Desktop Services / Terminal Services clients from
saving passwords on a computer. Note If this policy setting was previously configured as
Disabled or Not configured, any previously saved passwords will be deleted the first time a
Terminal Services client disconnects from any server.
The recommended state for this setting is: Enabled.
Rationale:
An attacker with physical access to the computer may be able to break the protection
guarding saved passwords. An attacker who compromises a user's account and connects to
their computer could use saved passwords to gain access to additional hosts.
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Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Policies\Microsoft\Windows NT\Terminal
Services\DisablePasswordSaving
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following Group Policy setting
to Enabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\Windows Components\Remote
Desktop Services\Remote Desktop Connection Client\Do not allow passwords to be saved
Impact:
If you enable this policy setting, the password saving checkbox is disabled for Remote
Desktop Services / Terminal Services clients and users will not be able to save passwords.
Default Value:
Disabled
References:
1. CCE-36223-6
574 | P a g e
18.9.48.3 Remote Desktop Session Host
This section contains recommendations for the Remote Desktop Session Host.
18.9.48.3.1 Application Compatibility
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
18.9.48.3.2 Connections
This section contains recommendations for Connections to the Remote Desktop Session
Host.
18.9.48.3.2.1 (L2) Ensure 'Restrict Remote Desktop Services users to a
single Remote Desktop Services session' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 2 - Domain Controller
 Level 2 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting allows you to restrict users to a single Remote Desktop Services session.
The recommended state for this setting is: Enabled.
Rationale:
This setting ensures that users & administrators who Remote Desktop to a server will
continue to use the same session - if they disconnect and reconnect, they will go back to the
same session they were using before, preventing the creation of a second simultaneous
session. This both prevents unnecessary resource usage by having the server host
unnecessary additional sessions (which would put extra load on the server) and also
ensures a consistency of experience for the user.
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Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Policies\Microsoft\Windows NT\Terminal Services:
fSingleSessionPerUser
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Enabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\Windows Components\Remote
Desktop Services\Remote Desktop Session Host\Connections\Restrict Remote Desktop
Services users to a single Remote Desktop Services session
Impact:
If you enable this policy setting, users who log on remotely by using Remote Desktop
Services will be restricted to a single session (either active or disconnected) on that server.
If the user leaves the session in a disconnected state, the user automatically reconnects to
that session at the next logon.
If you disable this policy setting, users are allowed to make unlimited simultaneous remote
connections by using Remote Desktop Services.
Default Value:
If you do not configure this policy setting, this policy setting is not specified at the Group
Policy level.
References:
1. CCE-37708-5
576 | P a g e
18.9.48.3.3 Device and Resource Redirection
This section contains recommendations related to Remote Desktop Session Host Device
and Resource Redirection.
18.9.48.3.3.1 (L2) Ensure 'Do not allow COM port redirection' is set to
'Enabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 2 - Domain Controller
 Level 2 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting specifies whether to prevent the redirection of data to client COM ports
from the remote computer in a Remote Desktop Services session.
The recommended state for this setting is: Enabled.
Rationale:
In a more security-sensitive environment, it is desirable to reduce the possible attack
surface. The need for COM port redirection within a Remote Desktop session is very rare,
so makes sense to reduce the number of unexpected avenues for data exfiltration and/or
malicious code transfer.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Policies\Microsoft\Windows NT\Terminal
Services:fDisableCcm
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Enabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\Windows Components\Remote
Desktop Services\Remote Desktop Session Host\Device and Resource Redirection\Do not
allow COM port redirection
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Impact:
If you enable this policy setting, users cannot redirect server data to the local COM port.
Default Value:
If you do not configure this policy setting, COM port redirection is not specified at the
Group Policy level.
References:
1. CCE-37696-2
578 | P a g e
18.9.48.3.3.2 (L1) Ensure 'Do not allow drive redirection' is set to
'Enabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting prevents users from sharing the local drives on their client computers to
Terminal Servers that they access. Mapped drives appear in the session folder tree in
Windows Explorer in the following format:
\\TSClient\<driveletter>$
If local drives are shared they are left vulnerable to intruders who want to exploit the data
that is stored on them.
The recommended state for this setting is: Enabled.
Rationale:
Data could be forwarded from the user's Terminal Server session to the user's local
computer without any direct user interaction.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Policies\Microsoft\Windows NT\Terminal
Services\fDisableCdm
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Enabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\Windows Components\Remote
Desktop Services\Remote Desktop Session Host\Device and Resource Redirection\Do not
allow drive redirection
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Impact:
Drive redirection will not be possible. In most cases, traditional network drive mapping to
file shares (including administrative shares) will serve as a capable substitute to still allow
file transfers when needed.
Default Value:
Disabled
References:
1. CCE-36509-8
580 | P a g e
18.9.48.3.3.3 (L2) Ensure 'Do not allow LPT port redirection' is set to
'Enabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 2 - Domain Controller
 Level 2 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting specifies whether to prevent the redirection of data to client LPT ports
during a Remote Desktop Services session.
The recommended state for this setting is: Enabled.
Rationale:
In a more security-sensitive environment, it is desirable to reduce the possible attack
surface. The need for LPT port redirection within a Remote Desktop session is very rare, so
makes sense to reduce the number of unexpected avenues for data exfiltration and/or
malicious code transfer.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Policies\Microsoft\Windows NT\Terminal
Services:fDisableLPT
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Enabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\Windows Components\Remote
Desktop Services\Remote Desktop Session Host\Device and Resource Redirection\Do not
allow LPT port redirection
Impact:
If you enable this policy setting, users in a Remote Desktop Services session cannot redirect
server data to the local LPT port.
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Default Value:
By default, Remote Desktop Services allows LPT port redirection.
References:
1. CCE-37778-8
582 | P a g e
18.9.48.3.3.4 (L2) Ensure 'Do not allow supported Plug and Play device
redirection' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 2 - Domain Controller
 Level 2 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting allows you to control the redirection of supported Plug and Play devices,
such as Windows Portable Devices, to the remote computer in a Remote Desktop Services
session.
The recommended state for this setting is: Enabled.
Rationale:
In a more security-sensitive environment, it is desirable to reduce the possible attack
surface. The need for Plug and Play device redirection within a Remote Desktop session is
very rare, so makes sense to reduce the number of unexpected avenues for data exfiltration
and/or malicious code transfer.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Policies\Microsoft\Windows NT\Terminal
Services:fDisablePNPRedir
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Enabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\Windows Components\Remote
Desktop Services\Remote Desktop Session Host\Device and Resource Redirection\Do not
allow supported Plug and Play device redirection
Impact:
If you enable this policy setting, users cannot redirect their supported Plug and Play
devices to the remote computer
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Default Value:
By default, Remote Desktop Services allows redirection of supported Plug and Play devices
References:
1. CCE-37477-7
18.9.48.3.4 Licensing
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
18.9.48.3.5 Printer Redirection
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
18.9.48.3.6 Profiles
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
18.9.48.3.7 RD Connection Broker
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
18.9.48.3.8 Remote Session Environment
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
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18.9.48.3.9 Security
This section contains recommendations related to Remote Desktop Session Host Security.
18.9.48.3.9.1 (L1) Ensure 'Always prompt for password upon
connection' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting specifies whether Terminal Services always prompts the client
computer for a password upon connection. You can use this policy setting to enforce a
password prompt for users who log on to Terminal Services, even if they already provided
the password in the Remote Desktop Connection client. By default, Terminal Services
allows users to automatically log on if they enter a password in the Remote Desktop
Connection client.
Note: If you do not configure this policy setting, the local computer administrator can use
the Terminal Services Configuration tool to either allow or prevent passwords from being
automatically sent.
The recommended state for this setting is: Enabled.
Rationale:
Users have the option to store both their username and password when they create a new
Remote Desktop connection shortcut. If the server that runs Terminal Services allows users
who have used this feature to log on to the server but not enter their password, then it is
possible that an attacker who has gained physical access to the user's computer could
connect to a Terminal Server through the Remote Desktop connection shortcut, even
though they may not know the user's password.
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Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Policies\Microsoft\Windows NT\Terminal
Services\fPromptForPassword
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Enabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\Windows Components\Remote
Desktop Services\Remote Desktop Session Host\Security\Always prompt for password upon
connection
Impact:
Users will always have to enter their password when they establish new Terminal Server
sessions.
Default Value:
Not configured
References:
1. CCE-37929-7
586 | P a g e
18.9.48.3.9.2 (L1) Ensure 'Require secure RPC communication' is set to
'Enabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting allows you to specify whether a terminal server requires secure remote
procedure call (RPC) communication with all clients or allows unsecured communication.
You can use this policy setting to strengthen the security of RPC communication with
clients by allowing only authenticated and encrypted requests.
The recommended state for this setting is: Enabled.
Rationale:
Allowing unsecure RPC communication can exposes the server to man in the middle attacks
and data disclosure attacks.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Policies\Microsoft\Windows NT\Terminal
Services:fEncryptRPCTraffic
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Enabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\Windows Components\Remote
Desktop Services\Remote Desktop Session Host\Security\Require secure RPC communication
Impact:
If you enable this policy setting, the terminal server accepts requests from RPC clients that
support secure requests, and does not allow unsecured communication with untrusted
clients.
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Default Value:
Not Configured. If you do not configure this policy setting, unsecured communication is
allowed.
References:
1. CCE-37567-5
588 | P a g e
18.9.48.3.9.3 (L1) Ensure 'Set client connection encryption level' is set to
'Enabled: High Level' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting specifies whether the computer that is about to host the remote
connection will enforce an encryption level for all data sent between it and the client
computer for the remote session.
The recommended state for this setting is Enabled: High Level.
Rationale:
If Terminal Server client connections are allowed that use low level encryption, it is more
likely that an attacker will be able to decrypt any captured Terminal Services network
traffic.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Policies\Microsoft\Windows NT\Terminal
Services\MinEncryptionLevel
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Enabled:
High Level:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\Windows Components\Remote
Desktop Services\Remote Desktop Session Host\Security\Set client connection encryption
level
Impact:
Clients that do not support 128-bit encryption will be unable to establish Terminal Server
sessions.
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Default Value:
Not configured
References:
1. CCE-36627-8
590 | P a g e
18.9.48.3.10 Session Time Limits
This section contains recommendations related to Remote Desktop Session Host Session
Time Limits.
18.9.48.3.10.1 (L2) Ensure 'Set time limit for active but idle Remote
Desktop Services sessions' is set to 'Enabled: 15 minutes or less' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 2 - Domain Controller
 Level 2 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting allows you to specify the maximum amount of time that an active
Remote Desktop Services session can be idle (without user input) before it is automatically
disconnected.
The recommended state for this setting is: Enabled: 15 minutes or less.
Rationale:
This setting helps to prevent active Remote Desktop sessions from tying up the computer
for long periods of time while not in use, preventing computing resources from being
consumed by large numbers of inactive sessions. In addition, old, forgotten Remote
Desktops session that are still active can cause password lockouts if the user's password
has changed but the old session is still running. For systems that limit the number of
connected users (e.g. servers in the default Administrative mode - 2 sessions only), other
users' old but still active sessions can prevent another user from connecting, resulting in an
effective denial of service.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Policies\Microsoft\Windows NT\Terminal
Services:MaxIdleTime
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Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Enabled:
15 minutes or less:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\Windows Components\Remote
Desktop Services\Remote Desktop Session Host\Session Time Limits\Set time limit for
active but idle Remote Desktop Services sessions
Impact:
If you enable this policy setting, you must select the desired time limit in the Idle session
limit list. Remote Desktop Services will automatically disconnect active but idle sessions
after the specified amount of time. The user receives a warning two minutes before the
session disconnects, which allows the user to press a key or move the mouse to keep the
session active. If you have a console session, idle session time limits do not apply.
Default Value:
By default, Remote Desktop Services allows sessions to remain active but idle for an
unlimited amount of time.
References:
1. CCE-37562-6
592 | P a g e
18.9.48.3.10.2 (L2) Ensure 'Set time limit for disconnected sessions' is
set to 'Enabled: 1 minute' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 2 - Domain Controller
 Level 2 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting allows you to configure a time limit for disconnected Remote Desktop
Services sessions.
The recommended state for this setting is: Enabled: 1 minute.
Rationale:
This setting helps to prevent active Remote Desktop sessions from tying up the computer
for long periods of time while not in use, preventing computing resources from being
consumed by large numbers of disconnected but still active sessions. In addition, old,
forgotten Remote Desktops session that are still active can cause password lockouts if the
user's password has changed but the old session is still running. For systems that limit the
number of connected users (e.g. servers in the default Administrative mode - 2 sessions
only), other users' old but still active sessions can prevent another user from connecting,
resulting in an effective denial of service. This setting is important to ensure a disconnected
session is properly terminated.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Policies\Microsoft\Windows NT\Terminal
Services:MaxDisconnectionTime
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Enabled:
1 minute:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\Windows Components\Remote
Desktop Services\Remote Desktop Session Host\Session Time Limits\Set time limit for
disconnected sessions
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Impact:
If you enable this policy setting, disconnected sessions are deleted from the server after the
specified amount of time. To enforce the default behavior that disconnected sessions are
maintained for an unlimited time, select Never. If you have a console session, disconnected
session time limits do not apply.
Default Value:
By default, Remote Desktop Services allows users to disconnect from a Remote Desktop
Services session without logging off and ending the session.
References:
1. CCE-37949-5
594 | P a g e
18.9.48.3.11 Temporary folders
This section contains recommendations related to Remote Desktop Session Host Session
Temporary folders.
18.9.48.3.11.1 (L1) Ensure 'Do not delete temp folders upon exit' is set
to 'Disabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting specifies whether Remote Desktop Services retains a user's per-session
temporary folders at logoff.
The recommended state for this setting is: Disabled.
Rationale:
Sensitive information could be contained inside the temporary folders and shared with
other administrators that log into the system.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Policies\Microsoft\Windows NT\Terminal
Services:DeleteTempDirsOnExit
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Disabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\Windows Components\Remote
Desktop Services\Remote Desktop Session Host\Temporary Folders\Do not delete temp
folders upon exit
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Impact:
If you disable this policy setting, temporary folders are deleted when a user logs off, even if
the server administrator specifies otherwise.
Default Value:
Not Configured
References:
1. CCE-37946-1
596 | P a g e
18.9.48.3.11.2 (L1) Ensure 'Do not use temporary folders per session' is
set to 'Disabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
By default, Remote Desktop Services creates a separate temporary folder on the RD
Session Host server for each active session that a user maintains on the RD Session Host
server. The temporary folder is created on the RD Session Host server in a Temp folder
under the user's profile folder and is named with the "sessionid." This temporary folder is
used to store individual temporary files.
To reclaim disk space, the temporary folder is deleted when the user logs off from a
session.
The recommended state for this setting is: Disabled.
Rationale:
By Disabling this setting you are keeping the cached data independent for each session,
both reducing the chance of problems from shared cached data between sessions, and
keeping possibly sensitive data separate to each user session.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Policies\Microsoft\Windows NT\Terminal
Services:PerSessionTempDir
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Disabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\Windows Components\Remote
Desktop Services\Remote Desktop Session Host\Temporary Folders\Do not use temporary
folders per session
597 | P a g e
Impact:
If this setting is enabled, only one temporary folder is used for all remote sessions. If a
communal temporary folder is used, it might be possible for users to access other users
temporary folders.
Default Value:
Default value is not configured which is the same as Disabled that allows the use of
temporary folders.
References:
1. CCE-38180-6
598 | P a g e
18.9.49 RSS Feeds
This section contains recommendations related to RSS feeds.
18.9.49.1 (L1) Ensure 'Prevent downloading of enclosures' is set to
'Enabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting prevents the user from having enclosures (file attachments)
downloaded from a feed to the user's computer.
The recommended state for this setting is: Enabled.
Rationale:
Allowing attachments to be downloaded through the RSS feed can introduce files that could
have malicious intent.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Policies\Microsoft\Internet
Explorer\Feeds:DisableEnclosureDownload
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Enabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\Windows Components\RSS
Feeds\Prevent downloading of enclosures
Impact:
If you disable or do not configure this policy setting, the user can set the Feed Sync Engine
to download an enclosure through the Feed property page. A developer can change the
download setting through the Feed APIs.
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Default Value:
Not Configured
References:
1. CCE-37126-0
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18.9.50 Search
This section contains recommendations for Search settings.
The Group Policy settings contained within this section are provided by the Group Policy
template "Search.admx/adml" that is included with the Microsoft Windows Vista, 2008,
7/2008R2, 8/2012, 8.1/2012R2 and Windows 10 Administrative Templates.
18.9.50.1 OCR
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
The Group Policy settings contained within this section are provided by the Group Policy
template "SearchOCR.admx/adml" that is included with the Microsoft Windows 7/2008R2,
8/2012, 8.1/2012R2 and Windows 10 Administrative Templates.
18.9.50.2 (L1) Ensure 'Allow indexing of encrypted files' is set to
'Disabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting allows encrypted items to be indexed. If you enable this policy setting,
indexing will attempt to decrypt and index the content (access restrictions will still apply).
If you disable this policy setting, the search service components (including non-Microsoft
components) are expected not to index encrypted items or encrypted stores. This policy
setting is not configured by default. If you do not configure this policy setting, the local
setting, configured through Control Panel, will be used. By default, the Control Panel setting
is set to not index encrypted content. When this setting is enabled or disabled, the index is
rebuilt completely. Full volume encryption (such as BitLocker Drive Encryption or a nonMicrosoft solution) must be used for the location of the index to maintain security for
encrypted files.
The recommended state for this setting is: Disabled.
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Rationale:
Indexing and allowing users to search encrypted files could potentially reveal confidential
data stored within the encrypted files.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Policies\Microsoft\Windows\Windows
Search\AllowIndexingEncryptedStoresOrItems
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Disabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\Windows
Components\Search\Allow indexing of encrypted files
Note: This Group Policy path does not exist by default. An additional Group Policy template
(Search.admx/adml) is required - it is included with the Microsoft Windows Vista, 2008,
7/2008R2, 8/2012, 8.1/2012R2 and Windows 10 Administrative Templates.
Impact:
The search service components (including non-Microsoft components) will not encrypted
items or encrypted stores.
References:
1. CCE-38277-0
602 | P a g e
18.9.50.3 (L2) Ensure 'Set what information is shared in Search' is set to
'Enabled: Anonymous info' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 2 - Domain Controller
 Level 2 - Member Server
Description:
Various levels of information can be shared with Bing in Search, to include user
information and location. Configuring this setting prevents users from selecting the level of
information shared and enables the most restrictive selection.
The recommended state for this setting is: Enabled: Anonymous info.
Rationale:
Limiting the search information shared with Bing enhances the privacy and security.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Policies\Microsoft\Windows\Windows
Search:ConnectedSearchPrivacy
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Enabled:
Anonymous info:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\Windows Components\Search\Set
what information is shared in Search
Note: This Group Policy path does not exist by default. An additional Group Policy template
(Search.admx/adml) is required - it is included with the Microsoft Windows Vista, 2008,
7/2008R2, 8/2012, 8.1/2012R2 and Windows 10 Administrative Templates.
Impact:
This setting may impact the end user search experience and results when using Bing
search.
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Default Value:
Default value is not configured which is the same as Disabled.
References:
1. CCE-36937-1
18.9.51 Security Center
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
18.9.52 Server for NIS
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
The Group Policy settings contained within this section are provided by the Group Policy
template "Snis.admx/adml" that is included with the Microsoft Windows Vista, 2008,
7/2008R2, 8/2012 & 8.1/2012R2 Administrative Templates.
18.9.53 Shutdown Options
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
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18.9.54 SkyDrive
This section contains recommendations related to SkyDrive.
The Group Policy settings contained within this section are provided by the Group Policy
template "SkyDrive.admx/adml" that is included with the Microsoft Windows 8.1/2012R2
Administrative Templates. Since this template contains different settings than the newer
Windows 10 version, we recommend renaming the Windows 10 version to
"OneDrive.admx/adml" before adding it to your ADMX repository or Central Store, so both
versions can coexist. Likewise, ensure that any Windows 8.1/2012 R2 versioned template
is named "SkyDrive.admx/adml" before placing it in your ADMX repository or Central
Store.
18.9.54.1 (L1) Ensure 'Prevent the usage of SkyDrive for file storage' is
set to 'Enabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting lets you prevent apps and features from working with files on SkyDrive.
The recommended state for this setting is: Enabled.
Rationale:
Enabling this setting prevents users from accidentally uploading confidential or sensitive
corporate information to SkyDrive cloud service.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Policies\Microsoft\Windows\Skydrive:DisableFileSync
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Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following Group Policy setting
to Enabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\Windows
Components\SkyDrive\Prevent the usage of SkyDrive for file storage
Note: This Group Policy path may not exist by default. An additional Group Policy template
(SkyDrive.admx/adml) may be required - it is included with the
Microsoft Windows 8.1/2012R2 Administrative Templates. Due to conflicting settings with
the newer Windows 10 template of the same name, we recommend renaming the Windows
10 template to "OneDrive.admx/adml" before adding it to your ADMX repository or Central
Store, so both versions can coexist. Likewise, ensure that any Windows 8.1/2012R2
versioned template is named "SkyDrive.admx/adml" before placing it in your ADMX
repository or Central Store.
Impact:
If you enable this policy setting: Users can't access SkyDrive from the SkyDrive app and file
picker. Windows Store apps can't access SkyDrive using the WinRT API. SkyDrive doesn't
appear in the navigation pane in File Explorer. SkyDrive files aren't kept in sync with the
cloud. Users can't automatically upload photos and videos from the camera roll folder. If
you disable or do not configure this policy setting apps and features can work with
SkyDrive file storage.
Default Value:
The default value is not configured which the same as disable.
References:
1. CCE-33826-9
18.9.55 Smart Card
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
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18.9.56 Software Protection Platform
This section contains recommendations related to the Software Protection Platform.
The Group Policy settings contained within this section are provided by the Group Policy
template "avsvalidationgp.admx/adml" that is included with the Microsoft Windows 10
Administrative Templates.
18.9.56.1 (L2) Ensure 'Turn off KMS Client Online AVS Validation' is set
to 'Enabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 2 - Domain Controller
 Level 2 - Member Server
Description:
The Key Management Service (KMS) is a Microsoft license activation method that entails
setting up a local server that stores the licenses. The server itself needs to connect to
Microsoft to activate the KMS service, but subsequent on-network clients can activate
Microsoft Windows OS and/or their Microsoft Office via the KMS server instead of
connecting directly to Microsoft. This policy setting lets you opt-out of sending KMS client
activation data to Microsoft automatically.
The recommended state for this setting is: Enabled.
Rationale:
Even though the KMS licensing method does not require a connection to Microsoft, the
clients using KMS licensing still send KMS client activation state data to Microsoft
automatically. Preventing this information from being sent can help reduce privacy
concerns.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Policies\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\Software
Protection Platform:NoGenTicket
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Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Enabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\Windows Components\Software
Protection Platform\Turn off KMS Client Online AVS Validation
Note: This Group Policy setting is provided by the Group Policy template
"avsvalidationgp.admx/adml" that is included with the Microsoft Windows 10
Administrative Templates.
Impact:
Enabling this setting prevents this computer from sending data to Microsoft regarding its
activation state.
Default Value:
Not Configured
18.9.57 Sound Recorder
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
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18.9.58 Store
This section contains recommendations related to the Windows Store.
The Group Policy settings contained within this section are provided by the Group Policy
template "WinStoreUI.admx/adml" that is included with the Microsoft Windows 8/2012 &
8.1/2012R2 Administrative Templates and the Group Policy template
"WindowsStore.admx/adml" that is included with Windows 10 Release 1511 Administrative
Templates.
18.9.58.1 (L1) Ensure 'Turn off Automatic Download and Install of
updates' is set to 'Disabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This setting enables or disables the automatic download and installation of app updates.
The recommended state for this setting is: Disabled.
Rationale:
Keeping your system properly patched can help protect against 0 day vulnerabilities.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Policies\Microsoft\WindowsStore:AutoDownload
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Disabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\Windows Components\Microsoft
Edge\Turn off Automatic Download and Install of updates
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Impact:
If you disable this setting, the automatic download and installation of app updates is turned
on.
Default Value:
Not Configured
References:
1. CCE-38360-4
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18.9.58.2 (L1) Ensure 'Turn off the offer to update to the latest version
of Windows' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
Enables or disables the Store offer to update to the latest version of Windows.
The recommended state for this setting is: Enabled.
Rationale:
Unplanned OS upgrades can lead to more preventable support calls. IT should be pushing
only approved updates to the machine.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Policies\Microsoft\WindowsStore:DisableOSUpgrade
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Enabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\Windows Components\Store\Turn
off the offer to update to the latest version of Windows
Impact:
If you enable this setting, the Store application will not offer updates to the latest version of
Windows.
Default Value:
Not Configured
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References:
1. CCE-38362-0
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18.9.58.3 (L2) Ensure 'Turn off the Store application' is set to 'Enabled'
(Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 2 - Domain Controller
 Level 2 - Member Server
Description:
This setting denies or allows access to the Store application.
The recommended state for this setting is: Enabled.
Rationale:
Only applications approved by an IT department should be installed. Allowing users to
install 3rd party applications can lead to missed patches and potential zero day
vulnerabilities.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Policies\Microsoft\WindowsStore:RemoveWindowsStore
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Enabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\Windows Components\Store\Turn
off the Store application
Impact:
If you enable this setting, access to the Store application is denied.
Default Value:
Not Configured
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References:
1. CCE-38363-8
18.9.59 Sync your settings
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
18.9.60 Tablet PC
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
18.9.61 Task Scheduler
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
18.9.62 Text Input
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
The Group Policy settings contained within this section are provided by the Group Policy
template "textinput.admx/adml" that is included with the Microsoft Windows 10
Administrative Templates.
18.9.63 Windows Calendar
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
18.9.64 Windows Color System
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
18.9.65 Windows Customer Experience Improvement Program
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
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18.9.66 Windows Defender
This section contains recommendations related to Windows Defender.
18.9.66.1 Client Interface
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
18.9.66.2 Exclusions
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
18.9.66.3 MAPS
This section contains recommendations related to Microsoft MAPS.
18.9.66.3.1 (L2) Ensure 'Join Microsoft MAPS' is set to 'Disabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 2 - Domain Controller
 Level 2 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting allows you to join Microsoft MAPS. Microsoft MAPS is the online
community that helps you choose how to respond to potential threats. The community also
helps stop the spread of new malicious software infections. You can choose to send basic or
additional information about detected software. Additional information helps Microsoft
create new definitions and help it to protect your computer.
Possible options are:(0x0) Disabled (default)(0x1) Basic membership(0x2) Advanced
membership Basic membership will send basic information to Microsoft about software
that has been detected including where the software came from the actions that you apply
or that are applied automatically and whether the actions were successful. Advanced
membership in addition to basic information will send more information to Microsoft
about malicious software spyware and potentially unwanted software including the
location of the software file names how the software operates and how it has impacted
your computer.
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The recommended state for this setting is: Disabled.
Rationale:
This information can include things like location of detected items on your computer if
harmful software was removed. The information will be automatically collected and sent.
In some instances personal information might unintentionally be sent to Microsoft.
However Microsoft will not use this information to identify you or contact you.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is in effect when the following registry value does not
exist, or when it exists with a value of 0:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Policies\Microsoft\Windows Defender\Spynet:SpynetReporting
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Disabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\Windows Components\Windows
Defender\MAPS\Join Microsoft MAPS
Impact:
If you enable this setting you will join Microsoft MAPS with the membership specified. If
you disable or do not configure this setting you will not join Microsoft MAPS.
Default Value:
Default value is not configured which is the same as disabled.
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18.9.67 Windows Error Reporting
This section contains recommendations related to Windows Error Reporting.
18.9.67.1 Advanced Error Reporting Settings
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
18.9.67.2 Consent
This section contains recommendations related to Windows Error Reporting consent.
18.9.67.2.1 (L1) Ensure 'Configure Default consent' is set to 'Enabled:
Always ask before sending data' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This setting allows you to set the default consent handling for error reports.
The recommended state for this setting is: Enabled: Always ask before sending data
Rationale:
Error reports may contain sensitive information and should not be sent to anyone
automatically.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Policies\Microsoft\Windows\Windows Error
Reporting\Consent:DefaultConsent
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Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Enabled:
Always ask before sending data:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\Windows Components\Windows
Error Reporting\Consent\Configure Default consent
Impact:
By setting to always ask before sending data: Windows prompts users for consent to send
reports.
Default Value:
Not Configured
References:
1. CCE-37112-0
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18.9.67.3 (L1) Ensure 'Automatically send memory dumps for OSgenerated error reports' is set to 'Disabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting controls whether memory dumps in support of OS-generated error
reports can be sent to Microsoft automatically. This policy does not apply to error reports
generated by 3rd-party products, or additional data other than memory dumps.
The recommended state for this setting is: Disabled.
Rationale:
Memory dumps may contain sensitive information and should not be automatically sent to
anyone.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Wow6432Node\Policies\Microsoft\Windows\Windows Error
Reporting:AutoApproveOSDumps
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Disabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\Windows Components\Windows
Error Reporting\Automatically send memory dumps for OS-generated error reports
Impact:
If you disable this policy setting, then all memory dumps are uploaded according to the
default consent and notification settings.
Default Value:
Not Configured
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References:
1. CCE-36978-5
18.9.68 Windows Game Recording and Broadcasting
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
The Group Policy settings contained within this section are provided by the Group Policy
template "gamedvr.admx/adml" that is included with the Microsoft Windows 10
Administrative Templates.
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18.9.69 Windows Installer
This section contains recommendations related to Windows Installer.
18.9.69.1 (L1) Ensure 'Allow user control over installs' is set to 'Disabled'
(Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
Permits users to change installation options that typically are available only to system
administrators. The security features of Windows Installer prevent users from changing
installation options typically reserved for system administrators, such as specifying the
directory to which files are installed. If Windows Installer detects that an installation
package has permitted the user to change a protected option, it stops the installation and
displays a message. These security features operate only when the installation program is
running in a privileged security context in which it has access to directories denied to the
user.
The recommended state for this setting is: Disabled.
Rationale:
In an Enterprise environment, only IT staff with administrative rights should be installing
or changing software on a system. Allowing users the ability can risk unapproved software
from being installed our removed from a system which could cause the system to become
vulnerable.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Policies\Microsoft\Windows\Installer:EnableUserControl
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Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Disabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\Windows Components\Windows
Installer\Allow user control over installs
Impact:
If you disable or do not configure this policy setting, the security features of Windows
Installer prevent users from changing installation options typically reserved for system
administrators, such as specifying the directory to which files are installed.
Default Value:
Not Configured
References:
1. CCE-36400-0
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18.9.69.2 (L1) Ensure 'Always install with elevated privileges' is set to
'Disabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
Directs Windows Installer to use system permissions when it installs any program on the
system.
This setting extends elevated privileges to all programs. These privileges are usually
reserved for programs that have been assigned to the user (offered on the desktop),
assigned to the computer (installed automatically), or made available in Add or Remove
Programs in Control Panel. This setting lets users install programs that require access to
directories that the user might not have permission to view or change, including directories
on highly restricted computers.
If you disable this setting or do not configure it, the system applies the current user's
permissions when it installs programs that a system administrator does not distribute or
offer.
Note: This setting appears both in the Computer Configuration and User Configuration
folders. To make this setting effective, you must enable the setting in both folders.
Caution: Skilled users can take advantage of the permissions this setting grants to change
their privileges and gain permanent access to restricted files and folders. Note that the User
Configuration version of this setting is not guaranteed to be secure.
The recommended state for this setting is: Disabled.
Rationale:
Users with limited privileges can exploit this feature by creating a Windows Installer
installation package that creates a new local account that belongs to the local built-in
Administrators group, adds their current account to the local built-in Administrators group,
installs malicious software, or performs other unauthorized activities.
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Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Policies\Microsoft\Windows\Installer\AlwaysInstallElevated
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Disabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\Windows Components\Windows
Installer\Always install with elevated privileges
Impact:
Windows Installer will apply the current user's permissions when it installs programs, this
will prevent standard users from installing applications that affect system-wide
configuration items.
Default Value:
Not configured
References:
1. CCE-36919-9
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18.9.69.3 (L2) Ensure 'Prevent Internet Explorer security prompt for
Windows Installer scripts' is set to 'Disabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 2 - Domain Controller
 Level 2 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting allows Web-based programs to install software on the computer without
notifying the user.
The recommended state for this setting is: Disabled.
Rationale:
Suppressing the system warning can pose a security risk and increase the attack surface on
the system.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Policies\Microsoft\Windows\Installer:SafeForScripting
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Disabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\Windows Components\Windows
Installer\Prevent Internet Explorer security prompt for Windows Installer scripts
Impact:
If you disable or do not configure this policy setting by default when a script hosted by an
Internet browser tries to install a program on the system the system warns users and
allows them to select or refuse the installation. If you enable this policy setting the warning
is suppressed and allows the installation to proceed. This policy setting is designed for
enterprises that use Web-based tools to distribute programs to their employees. However
because this policy setting can pose a security risk it should be applied cautiously.
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Default Value:
Default value is not configured which is the same as Disable.
References:
1. CCE-37524-6
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18.9.70 Windows Logon Options
This section contains recommendations related to Windows Logon Options.
18.9.70.1 (L1) Ensure 'Sign-in last interactive user automatically after a
system-initiated restart' is set to 'Disabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting controls whether a device will automatically sign-in the last interactive
user after Windows Update restarts the system. If you enable or do not configure this
policy setting the device securely saves the user's credentials (including the user name
domain and encrypted password) to configure automatic sign-in after a Windows Update
restart. After the Windows Update restart the user is automatically signed-in and the
session is automatically locked with all the lock screen apps configured for that user. If you
disable this policy setting the device does not store the user's credentials for automatic
sign-in after a Windows Update restart. The users' lock screen apps are not restarted after
the system restarts.
The recommended state for this setting is: Disabled.
Rationale:
Disabling this feature will prevent the caching of user's credentials and unauthorized use of
the device, and also ensure the user is aware of the restart.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed.
This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Policies\System:DisableAu
tomaticRestartSignOn
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Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Disabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\Windows Components\Windows
Logon Options\Sign-in last interactive user automatically after a system-initiated
restart
Impact:
The user is required to present the logon credentials in order to proceed after restart.
Default Value:
Not configured
References:
1. CCE-36977-7
18.9.71 Windows Mail
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
18.9.72 Windows Media Center
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
18.9.73 Windows Media Digital Rights Management
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
18.9.74 Windows Media Player
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
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18.9.75 Windows Meeting Space
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
The Group Policy settings contained within this section are provided by the Group Policy
template "WindowsCollaboration.admx/adml" that is included with the Microsoft Windows
Vista & 2008 Administrative Templates.
18.9.76 Windows Messenger
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
18.9.77 Windows Mobility Center
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
18.9.78 Windows Movie Maker
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
The Group Policy settings contained within this section are provided by the Group Policy
template "MovieMaker.admx/adml" that is included with the Microsoft Windows Vista &
2008 Administrative Templates.
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18.9.79 Windows PowerShell
This section contains recommendations related to Windows PowerShell.
18.9.79.1 (L1) Ensure 'Turn on PowerShell Script Block Logging' is set to
'Disabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting enables logging of all PowerShell script input to the Microsoft-WindowsPowerShell/Operational event log.
The recommended state for this setting is: Disabled.
Rationale:
Due to the potential risks of capturing passwords in the logs. This setting should only be
needed for debugging purposes, and not in normal operation, it is important to ensure this
is set to Disabled.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Policies\Microsoft\Windows\PowerShell\ScriptBlockLogging:E
nableScriptBlockLogging
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following Group Policy setting
to Disabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\Windows Components\Windows
PowerShell\Turn on PowerShell Script Block Logging
Note: This Group Policy path does not exist by default. A newer version of the
"powershellexecutionpolicy.admx/adml" Administrative Template is required - it is
included with the Microsoft Windows 10 Administrative Templates.
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Impact:
If you disable this policy setting, logging of PowerShell script input is disabled.
Default Value:
Not Configured
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18.9.79.2 (L1) Ensure 'Turn on PowerShell Transcription' is set to
'Disabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This Policy setting lets you capture the input and output of Windows PowerShell
commands into text-based transcripts.
The recommended state for this setting is: Disabled.
Rationale:
If this setting is enabled there is a risk that passwords could get stored in plain text in the
PowerShell_transcript output file.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Policies\Microsoft\Windows\PowerShell\Transcription:Enable
Transcripting
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following Group Policy setting
to Disabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\Windows Components\Windows
PowerShell\Turn on PowerShell Transcription
Note: This Group Policy path does not exist by default. A newer version of the
"powershellexecutionpolicy.admx/adml" Administrative Template is required - it is
included with the Microsoft Windows 10 Administrative Templates.
Impact:
If you disable this policy setting, transcription of PowerShell-based applications is disabled
by default, although transcription can still be enabled through the Start-Transcript cmdlet.
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Default Value:
Not Configured
18.9.80 Windows Reliability Analysis
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
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18.9.81 Windows Remote Management (WinRM)
This section contains recommendations related to Windows Remote Management
(WinRM).
18.9.81.1 WinRM Client
This section contains recommendations related to the WinRM client.
18.9.81.1.1 (L1) Ensure 'Allow Basic authentication' is set to 'Disabled'
(Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting allows you to manage whether the Windows Remote Management
(WinRM) client uses Basic authentication.
If you enable this policy setting, the WinRM client will use Basic authentication. If WinRM is
configured to use HTTP transport, then the user name and password are sent over the
network as clear text.
If you disable or do not configure this policy setting, then the WinRM client will not use
Basic authentication.
The recommended state for this setting is: Disabled.
Rationale:
Basic authentication is less robust than other authentication methods available in WinRM
because credentials including passwords are transmitted in plain text. An attacker who is
able to capture packets on the network where WinRM is running may be able to determine
the credentials used for accessing remote hosts via WinRM.
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Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Policies\Microsoft\Windows\WinRM\Client\AllowBasic
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Disabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\Windows Components\Windows
Remote Management (WinRM)\WinRM Client\Allow Basic authentication
Impact:
None - this is the default behavior.
Default Value:
Not configured
References:
1. CCE-36310-1
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18.9.81.1.2 (L1) Ensure 'Allow unencrypted traffic' is set to 'Disabled'
(Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting allows you to manage whether the Windows Remote Management
(WinRM) client sends and receives unencrypted messages over the network.
If you enable this policy setting, the WinRM client sends and receives unencrypted
messages over the network.
If you disable or do not configure this policy setting, the WinRM client sends or receives
only encrypted messages over the network.
The recommended state for this setting is: Disabled.
Rationale:
Encrypting WinRM network traffic reduces the risk of an attacker viewing or modifying
WinRM messages as they transit the network.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Policies\Microsoft\Windows\WinRM\Client\AllowUnencryptedTr
affic
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Disabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\Windows Components\Windows
Remote Management (WinRM)\WinRM Client\Allow unencrypted traffic
Impact:
None - this is the default behavior.
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Default Value:
Not configured
References:
1. CCE-37726-7
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18.9.81.1.3 (L1) Ensure 'Disallow Digest authentication' is set to
'Enabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting allows you to manage whether the Windows Remote Management
(WinRM) client will not use Digest authentication.
If you enable this policy setting, the WinRM client will not use Digest authentication.
If you disable or do not configure this policy setting, the WinRM client will use Digest
authentication.
The recommended state for this setting is: Enabled.
Rationale:
Digest authentication is less robust than other authentication methods available in WinRM,
an attacker who is able to capture packets on the network where WinRM is running may be
able to determine the credentials used for accessing remote hosts via WinRM.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Policies\Microsoft\Windows\WinRM\Client\AllowDigest
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Enabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\Windows Components\Windows
Remote Management (WinRM)\WinRM Client\Disallow Digest authentication
Impact:
The WinRM client will not use Digest authentication.
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Default Value:
Not configured
References:
1. CCE-38318-2
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18.9.81.2 WinRM Service
This section contains recommendations related to the WinRM service.
18.9.81.2.1 (L1) Ensure 'Allow Basic authentication' is set to 'Disabled'
(Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting allows you to manage whether the Windows Remote Management
(WinRM) service accepts Basic authentication from a remote client.
If you enable this policy setting, the WinRM service will accept Basic authentication from a
remote client.
If you disable or do not configure this policy setting, the WinRM service will not accept
Basic authentication from a remote client.
The recommended state for this setting is: Disabled.
Rationale:
Basic authentication is less robust than other authentication methods available in WinRM
because credentials including passwords are transmitted in plain text. An attacker who is
able to capture packets on the network where WinRM is running may be able to determine
the credentials used for accessing remote hosts via WinRM.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Policies\Microsoft\Windows\WinRM\Service\AllowBasic
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Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Disabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\Windows Components\Windows
Remote Management (WinRM)\WinRM Service\Allow Basic authentication
Impact:
None - this is the default behavior.
Default Value:
Not configured
References:
1. CCE-36254-1
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18.9.81.2.2 (L1) Ensure 'Allow unencrypted traffic' is set to 'Disabled'
(Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting allows you to manage whether the Windows Remote Management
(WinRM) service sends and receives unencrypted messages over the network.
If you enable this policy setting, the WinRM client sends and receives unencrypted
messages over the network.
If you disable or do not configure this policy setting, the WinRM client sends or receives
only encrypted messages over the network.
The recommended state for this setting is: Disabled.
Rationale:
Encrypting WinRM network traffic reduces the risk of an attacker viewing or modifying
WinRM messages as they transit the network.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Policies\Microsoft\Windows\WinRM\Service\AllowUnencryptedT
raffic
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Disabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\Windows Components\Windows
Remote Management (WinRM)\WinRM Service\Allow unencrypted traffic
Impact:
None - this is the default behavior.
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Default Value:
Not configured
References:
1. CCE-38223-4
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18.9.81.2.3 (L1) Ensure 'Disallow WinRM from storing RunAs
credentials' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting allows you to manage whether the Windows Remote Management
(WinRM) service will not allow RunAs credentials to be stored for any plug-ins.
If you enable this policy setting, the WinRM service will not allow the RunAsUser or
RunAsPassword configuration values to be set for any plug-ins. If a plug-in has already set
the RunAsUser and RunAsPassword configuration values, the RunAsPassword
configuration value will be erased from the credential store on this computer.
If you disable or do not configure this policy setting, the WinRM service will allow the
RunAsUser and RunAsPassword configuration values to be set for plug-ins and the
RunAsPassword value will be stored securely.
If you enable and then disable this policy setting, any values that were previously
configured for RunAsPassword will need to be reset.
The recommended state for this setting is: Enabled.
Rationale:
Although the ability to store RunAs credentials is a convenient feature it increases the risk
of account compromise slightly. For example, if you forget to lock your desktop before
leaving it unattended for a few minutes another person could access not only the desktop
of your computer but also any hosts you manage via WinRM with cached RunAs
credentials.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Policies\Microsoft\Windows\WinRM\Service\DisableRunAs
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Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Enabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\Windows Components\Windows
Remote Management (WinRM)\WinRM Service\Disallow WinRM from storing RunAs credentials
Impact:
The WinRM service will not allow the RunAsUser or RunAsPassword configuration values
to be set for any plug-ins. If a plug-in has already set the RunAsUser and RunAsPassword
configuration values, the RunAsPassword configuration value will be erased from the
credential store on this computer.
If this setting is later Disabled again, any values that were previously configured for
RunAsPassword will need to be reset.
Default Value:
Not configured
References:
1. CCE-36000-8
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18.9.82 Windows Remote Shell
This section contains settings related to Windows Remote Shell.
18.9.82.1 (L2) Ensure 'Allow Remote Shell Access' is set to 'Disabled'
(Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 2 - Domain Controller
 Level 2 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting allows you to manage configuration of remote access to all supported
shells to execute scripts and commands.
The recommended state for this setting is: Disabled.
Rationale:
Any feature is a potential avenue of attack, those that enable inbound network connections
are particularly risky. Only enable the use of the Windows Remote Shell on trusted
networks and when feasible employ additional controls such as IPsec.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy object is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Policies\Microsoft\Windows\WinRM\Service\WinRS:AllowRemote
ShellAccess
Remediation:
To implement the recommended configuration state, set the following Group Policy setting
to Disabled.
Computer Configuration\Administrative Templates\Windows Components\Windows Remote
Shell\Allow Remote Shell Access
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Impact:
If you disable or do not configure this policy setting, remote access is not allowed to all
supported shells to execute scripts and commands.
Default Value:
Not Configured
References:
1. CCE-36499-2
18.9.83 Windows SideShow
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
The Group Policy settings contained within this section are provided by the Group Policy
template "Sideshow.admx/adml" that is included with the Microsoft Windows Vista, 2008,
7/2008R2 & 8/2012 Administrative Templates.
18.9.84 Windows System Resource Manager
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
The Group Policy settings contained within this section are provided by the Group Policy
template "SystemResourceManager.admx/adml" that is included with the Microsoft
Windows Vista, 2008, 7/2008R2 & 8/2012 Administrative Templates.
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18.9.85 Windows Update
This section contains recommendations related to Windows Update.
18.9.85.1 (L1) Ensure 'Configure Automatic Updates' is set to 'Enabled'
(Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting specifies whether computers in your environment will receive security
updates from Windows Update or WSUS. If you configure this policy setting to Enabled, the
operating system will recognize when a network connection is available and then use the
network connection to search Windows Update or your designated intranet site for
updates that apply to them.
After you configure this policy setting to Enabled, select one of the following three options
in the Configure Automatic Updates Properties dialog box to specify how the service will
work:
- Notify before downloading any updates and notify again before installing them.
- Download the updates automatically and notify when they are ready to be installed.
(Default setting)
- Automatically download updates and install them on the schedule specified below.
If you disable this policy setting, you will need to download and manually install any
available updates from Windows Update.
The recommended state for this setting is: Enabled.
Rationale:
Although each version of Windows is thoroughly tested before release, it is possible that
problems will be discovered after the products are shipped. The Configure Automatic
Updates setting can help you ensure that the computers in your environment will always
have the most recent critical operating system updates and service packs installed.
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Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Policies\Microsoft\Windows\WindowsUpdate\AU\NoAutoUpdate
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Enabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\Windows Components\Windows
Update\Configure Automatic Updates
Impact:
Critical operating system updates and service packs will automatically download and
install at 3:00 A.M. daily.
Default Value:
Download the updates automatically and notify when they are ready to be installed
References:
1. CCE-36172-5
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18.9.85.2 (L1) Ensure 'Configure Automatic Updates: Scheduled install
day' is set to '0 - Every day' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting specifies whether computers in your environment will receive security
updates from Windows Update or WSUS. If you configure this policy setting to Enabled, the
operating system will recognize when a network connection is available and then use the
network connection to search Windows Update or your designated intranet site for
updates that apply to them.
After you configure this policy setting to Enabled, select one of the following three options
in the Configure Automatic Updates Properties dialog box to specify how the service will
work:
- Notify before downloading any updates and notify again before installing them.
- Download the updates automatically and notify when they are ready to be installed.
(Default setting)
- Automatically download updates and install them on the schedule specified below.
If you disable this policy setting, you will need to download and manually install any
available updates from Windows Update.
The recommended state for this setting is: 0 - Every day.
Rationale:
Although each version of Windows is thoroughly tested before release, it is possible that
problems will be discovered after the products are shipped. The Configure Automatic
Updates setting can help you ensure that the computers in your environment will always
have the most recent critical operating system updates and service packs installed.
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Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Policies\Microsoft\Windows\WindowsUpdate\AU\ScheduledInsta
llDay
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to 0 - Every
day:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\Windows Components\Windows
Update\Configure Automatic Updates: Scheduled install day
Impact:
Critical operating system updates and service packs will automatically download and
install at 3:00 A.M. daily.
Default Value:
Not Defined
References:
1. CCE-36172-5
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18.9.85.3 (L1) Ensure 'No auto-restart with logged on users for
scheduled automatic updates installations' is set to 'Disabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting specifies that Automatic Updates will wait for computers to be restarted
by the users who are logged on to them to complete a scheduled installation.
If you enable the No auto-restart for scheduled Automatic Updates installations setting,
Automatic Updates does not restart computers automatically during scheduled
installations. Instead, Automatic Updates notifies users to restart their computers to
complete the installations. You should note that Automatic Updates will not be able to
detect future updates until restarts occur on the affected computers. If you disable or do
not configure this setting, Automatic Updates will notify users that their computers will
automatically restart in 5 minutes to complete the installations.
The possible values for the No auto-restart for scheduled Automatic Updates installations
setting are:
- Enabled
- Disabled
- Not Configured
Note: This setting applies only when you configure Automatic Updates to perform
scheduled update installations. If you configure the Configure Automatic Updates setting to
Disabled, this setting has no effect.
The recommended state for this setting is: Disabled.
Rationale:
Sometimes updates require updated computers to be restarted to complete an installation.
If the computer cannot restart automatically, then the most recent update will not
completely install and no new updates will download to the computer until it is restarted.
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Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Policies\Microsoft\Windows\WindowsUpdate\AU\NoAutoRebootWi
thLoggedOnUsers
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Disabled:
Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\Windows Components\Windows
Update\No auto-restart with logged on users for scheduled automatic updates
installations
Impact:
If you enable this policy setting, the operating systems on the servers in your environment
will restart themselves automatically. For critical servers this could lead to a temporary
denial of service (DoS) condition.
Default Value:
Enabled
References:
1. CCE-37027-0
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19 Administrative Templates (User)
This section contains recommendations for user-based administrative templates.
19.1 Control Panel
This section contains recommendations for Control Panel settings.
19.1.1 Add or Remove Programs
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
19.1.2 Display
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
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19.1.3 Personalization
This section contains recommendations for personalization settings.
19.1.3.1 (L1) Ensure 'Enable screen saver' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting allows you to manage whether or not screen savers run. If the Screen
Saver setting is disabled screen savers do not run and the screen saver section of the
Screen Saver tab in Display in Control Panel is disabled. If this setting is enabled a screen
saver will run if the following two conditions are met: first, that a valid screen saver is
specified on the client via the Screen Saver Executable Name group policy setting or
Control Panel on the client. Second, the screensaver timeout is set to a value greater than
zero via the Screen Saver Timeout group policy setting or Control Panel on the client.
The recommended state for this setting is: Enabled.
Rationale:
If a user forgets to lock their computer when they walk away it's possible that a passerby
will hijack it.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_USERS\<SID>\Software\Policies\Microsoft\Windows\Control
Panel\Desktop\ScreenSaveActive
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Enabled:
User Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\Control
Panel\Personalization\Enable screen saver
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Impact:
The screen saver will automatically activate when the computer has been unattended for
the amount of time specified by the Screen Saver timeout setting. The impact should be
minimal since the screen saver is enabled by default.
Default Value:
Not Configured
References:
1. CCE-37970-1
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19.1.3.2 (L1) Ensure 'Force specific screen saver: Screen saver
executable name' is set to 'Enabled: scrnsave.scr' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting allows you to manage whether or not screen savers run. If the Screen
Saver setting is disabled screen savers do not run and the screen saver section of the
Screen Saver tab in Display in Control Panel is disabled. If this setting is enabled a screen
saver will run if the following two conditions are met: first, that a valid screen saver is
specified on the client via the Screen Saver Executable Name group policy setting or
Control Panel on the client. Second, the screensaver timeout is set to a value greater than
zero via the Screen Saver Timeout group policy setting or Control Panel on the client.
The recommended state for this setting is: Enabled: scrnsave.scr.
Rationale:
If a user forgets to lock their computer when they walk away it's possible that a passerby
will hijack it.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_USERS\<SID>\Software\Policies\Microsoft\Windows\Control
Panel\Desktop\SCRNSAVE.EXE
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Enabled:
scrnsave.scr:
User Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\Control
Panel\Personalization\Force specific screen saver
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Impact:
The screen saver will automatically activate when the computer has been unattended for
the amount of time specified by the Screen Saver timeout setting.
Default Value:
Not Configured
References:
1. CCE-37907-3
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19.1.3.3 (L1) Ensure 'Password protect the screen saver' is set to
'Enabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
If the Password protect the screen saver setting is enabled, then all screen savers are
password protected, if it is disabled then password protection cannot be set on any screen
saver.
The recommended state for this setting is: Enabled.
Rationale:
If a user forgets to lock their computer when they walk away it is possible that a passerby
will hijack it.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_USERS\<SID>\Software\Policies\Microsoft\Windows\Control
Panel\Desktop\ScreenSaverIsSecure
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Enabled:
User Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\Control
Panel\Personalization\Password protect the screen saver
Impact:
Users will have to provide their logon credentials when they want to access their locked
desktop session.
Default Value:
Not Configured
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References:
1. CCE-37658-2
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19.1.3.4 (L1) Ensure 'Screen saver timeout' is set to 'Enabled: 900
seconds or fewer, but not 0' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
If the Screen Saver Timeout setting is enabled, then the screen saver will be launched when
the specified amount of time has passed since the last user action. Valid values range from
1 to 89,400 seconds (24 hours). The setting has no effect if the wait time is set to zero or no
screen saver has been specified.
The recommended state for this setting is: Enabled: 900 seconds or fewer, but not 0.
Rationale:
If a user forgets to lock their computer when they walk away it is possible that a passerby
will hijack it.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_USERS\<SID>\Software\Policies\Microsoft\Windows\Control
Panel\Desktop\ScreenSaveTimeOut
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Enabled:
900 or fewer, but not 0:
User Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\Control
Panel\Personalization\Screen saver timeout
Impact:
The screen saver will automatically activate when the computer has been unattended for
the amount of time specified. The impact should be minimal since the screen saver is
enabled by default.
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Default Value:
Not Configured
References:
1. CCE-37908-1
19.2 Desktop
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
19.3 Network
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
19.4 Shared Folders
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
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19.5 Start Menu and Taskbar
This section contains recommendations for Start Menu and Taskbar settings.
19.5.1 Notifications
This section contains recommendations for Notification settings.
19.5.1.1 (L1) Ensure 'Turn off toast notifications on the lock screen' is set
to 'Enabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting turns off toast notifications on the lock screen. If you enable this policy
setting, applications will not be able to raise toast notifications on the lock screen. If you
disable or do not configure this policy setting, toast notifications on the lock screen are
enabled and can be turned off by the administrator or user. No reboots or service restarts
are required for this policy setting to take effect.
The recommended state for this setting is Enabled.
Rationale:
While this feature can be handy for users applications that provide toast notifications
might display sensitive personal or business data while the device is unattended.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_USERS\<SID>\SOFTWARE\Policies\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\PushNotifications\
NoToastApplicationNotificationOnLockScreen
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Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Enabled:
User Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\Start Menu and
Taskbar\Notifications\Turn off toast notifications on the lock screen
Impact:
By turning off this feature, applications will not be able to raise toast notifications on the
lock screen, and user will not be able to access the information.
References:
1. CCE-36332-5
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19.6 System
This section contains recommendations for System settings.
19.6.1 Ctrl+Alt+Del Options
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
19.6.2 Driver Installation
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
19.6.3 Folder Redirection
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
19.6.4 Group Policy
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
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19.6.5 Internet Communication Management
This section contains recommendations related to Internet Communication Management.
19.6.5.1 Internet Communication settings
This section contains recommendations related to Internet Communication settings.
19.6.5.1.1 (L2) Ensure 'Turn off Help Experience Improvement Program'
is set to 'Enabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 2 - Domain Controller
 Level 2 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting specifies whether users can participate in the Help Experience
Improvement program. The Help Experience Improvement program collects information
about how customers use Windows Help so that Microsoft can improve it.
The recommended state for this setting is: Enabled.
Rationale:
Large enterprise environments may not want to have information collected from managed
client computers.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_USERS\[USER
SID]\Software\Policies\Microsoft\Assistance\Client\1.0:NoImplicitFeedback
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Enabled:
User Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\System\Internet Communication
Management\Internet Communication Settings\Turn off Help Experience Improvement
Program
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Impact:
If you enable this policy setting, users cannot participate in the Help Experience
Improvement program.
Default Value:
Not Configured
References:
1. CCE-37542-8
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19.7 Windows Components
This section contains recommendations for Windows Component settings.
19.7.1 Add features to Windows 8 / 8.1 / 10
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
The Group Policy settings contained within this section are provided by the Group Policy
template "WindowsAnytimeUpgrade.admx/adml" that is included with the Microsoft
Windows 8/2012, 8.1/2012R2 and Windows 10 Administrative Templates.
19.7.2 App runtime
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
19.7.3 Application Compatibility
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
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19.7.4 Attachment Manager
This section contains recommendations related to Attachment Manager.
19.7.4.1 (L1) Ensure 'Do not preserve zone information in file
attachments' is set to 'Disabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting allows you to manage whether Windows marks file attachments from
Internet Explorer or Microsoft Outlook' Express with information about their zone of origin
(such as restricted, Internet, intranet, or local). This policy setting requires that files be
downloaded to NTFS disk partitions to function correctly. If zone information is not
preserved, Windows cannot make proper risk assessments based on the zone where the
attachment came from.
If the Do not preserve zone information in file attachments setting is enabled, file
attachments are not marked with their zone information. If this policy setting is disabled,
Windows is forced to store file attachments with their zone information.
The recommended state for this setting is: Disabled.
Rationale:
A file that is downloaded from a computer in the Internet or Restricted Sites zone may be
moved to a location that makes it appear safe, like an intranet file share, and executed by an
unsuspecting user.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_USERS\<SID>\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Policies\Attachments\SaveZo
neInformation
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Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Disabled:
User Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\Windows Components\Attachment
Manager\Do not preserve zone information in file attachments
Impact:
None, this is the default configuration.
Default Value:
Disabled
References:
1. CCE-37424-9
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19.7.4.2 (L1) Ensure 'Notify antivirus programs when opening
attachments' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
Antivirus programs are mandatory in many environments and provide a strong defense
against attack.
The Notify antivirus programs when opening attachments setting allows you to manage
how registered antivirus programs are notified. When enabled, this policy setting
configures Windows to call the registered antivirus program and have it scan file
attachments when they are opened by users. If the antivirus scan fails, the attachments are
blocked from being opened. If this policy setting is disabled, Windows does not call the
registered antivirus program when file attachments are opened.
The recommended state for this setting is: Enabled.
Note: An updated antivirus program must be installed for this policy setting to function
properly.
Rationale:
Antivirus programs that do not perform on-access checks may not be able to scan
downloaded files.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_USERS\<SID>\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Policies\Attachments\ScanWi
thAntiVirus
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Enabled:
User Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\Windows Components\Attachment
Manager\Notify antivirus programs when opening attachments
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Impact:
When the Notify antivirus programs when opening attachments setting is Enabled, every
downloaded file or e-mail attachment that the user opens will be scanned.
Default Value:
Disabled
References:
1. CCE-36622-9
19.7.5 AutoPlay Policies
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
19.7.6 Backup
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
The Group Policy settings contained within this section are provided by the Group Policy
template "WindowsBackup.admx/adml" that is included with the Microsoft Windows Vista,
2008, 7/2008R2, 8/2012 and 8.1/2012R2 Administrative Templates, or the Group Policy
template "UserDataBackup.admx/adml" included with the Microsoft Windows 10
Administrative Templates.
19.7.7 Credential User Interface
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
19.7.8 Desktop Gadgets
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
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19.7.9 Desktop Windows Manager
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
19.7.10 Digital Locker
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
19.7.11 Edge UI
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
19.7.12 EMET
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
The Group Policy settings contained within this section are provided by the Group Policy
template "EMET.admx/adml" that is included with Microsoft Enhanced Mitigation
Experience Toolkit (EMET).
19.7.13 File Explorer
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
19.7.14 File Revocation
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
19.7.15 IME
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
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19.7.16 Import Video
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
The Group Policy settings contained within this section are provided by the Group Policy
template "CaptureWizard.admx/adml" that is included with the Microsoft Windows Vista &
2008 Administrative Templates.
19.7.17 Instant Search
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
19.7.18 Internet Explorer
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
19.7.19 Location and Sensors
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
19.7.20 Microsoft Edge
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
The Group Policy settings contained within this section are provided by the Group Policy
template "microsoftedge.admx/adml" that is included with the Microsoft Windows 10
Administrative Templates.
19.7.21 Microsoft Management Console
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
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19.7.22 Microsoft Passport for Work
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
The Group Policy settings contained within this section are provided by the Group Policy
template "passport.admx/adml" that is included with the Microsoft Windows 10
Administrative Templates.
19.7.23 NetMeeting
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
19.7.24 Network Projector
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
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19.7.25 Network Sharing
This section contains recommendations related to Network Sharing.
19.7.25.1 (L1) Ensure 'Prevent users from sharing files within their
profile.' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
This policy setting specifies whether users can share files within their profile. By default
users are allowed to share files within their profile to other users on their network after an
administrator opts in the computer. An administrator can opt in the computer by using the
sharing wizard to share a file within their profile.
The recommended state for this setting is: Enabled.
Rationale:
If not properly controlled a user could accidentally share sensitive data with unauthorized
users. In a corporate environment, the company should provide a managed location for file
sharing, such as a file server or SharePoint.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_USERS\[USER
SID]\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Policies\Explorer:NoInplaceSharing
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Enabled:
User Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\Windows Components\Network
Sharing\Prevent users from sharing files within their profile.
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Impact:
If you enable this policy setting, users cannot share files within their profile using the
sharing wizard. Also, the sharing wizard cannot create a share at %root%\users and can
only be used to create SMB shares on folders.
Default Value:
Not Configured. By default users are allowed to share files within their profile to other
users on their network after an administrator opts in the computer.
References:
1. CCE-38070-9
19.7.26 Presentation Settings
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
19.7.27 Remote Desktop Services
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
19.7.28 RSS Feeds
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
19.7.29 Search
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
The Group Policy settings contained within this section are provided by the Group Policy
template "Search.admx/adml" that is included with the Microsoft Windows Vista, 2008,
7/2008R2, 8/2012, 8.1/2012R2 and Windows 10 Administrative Templates.
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19.7.30 Sound Recorder
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
19.7.31 Store
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
The Group Policy settings contained within this section are provided by the Group Policy
template "WinStoreUI.admx/adml" that is included with the Microsoft Windows 8/2012 &
8.1/2012R2 Administrative Templates.
19.7.32 Tablet PC
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
19.7.33 Task Scheduler
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
19.7.34 Windows Calendar
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
19.7.35 Windows Color System
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
19.7.36 Windows Error Reporting
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
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19.7.37 Windows Installer
This section contains recommendations related to Windows Installer.
19.7.37.1 (L1) Ensure 'Always install with elevated privileges' is set to
'Disabled' (Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 1 - Domain Controller
 Level 1 - Member Server
Description:
Directs Windows Installer to use system permissions when it installs any program on the
system.
This setting extends elevated privileges to all programs. These privileges are usually
reserved for programs that have been assigned to the user (offered on the desktop),
assigned to the computer (installed automatically), or made available in Add or Remove
Programs in Control Panel. This setting lets users install programs that require access to
directories that the user might not have permission to view or change, including directories
on highly restricted computers.
If you disable this setting or do not configure it, the system applies the current user's
permissions when it installs programs that a system administrator does not distribute or
offer.
Note: This setting appears both in the Computer Configuration and User Configuration
folders. To make this setting effective, you must enable the setting in both folders.
Caution: Skilled users can take advantage of the permissions this setting grants to change
their privileges and gain permanent access to restricted files and folders. Note that the User
Configuration version of this setting is not guaranteed to be secure.
The recommended state for this setting is: Disabled.
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Rationale:
Users with limited privileges can exploit this feature by creating a Windows Installer
installation package that creates a new local account that belongs to the local built-in
Administrators group, adds their current account to the local built-in Administrators group,
installs malicious software, or performs other unauthorized activities.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_USERS\<SID>\Software\Policies\Microsoft\Windows\Installer\AlwaysInstallElevated
Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Disabled:
User Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\Windows Components\Windows
Installer\Always install with elevated privileges
Impact:
Windows Installer will apply the current user's permissions when it installs programs, this
will prevent standard users from installing applications that affect system-wide
configuration items.
Default Value:
Not configured
References:
1. CCE-37490-0
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19.7.38 Windows Logon Options
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
19.7.39 Windows Mail
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
19.7.40 Windows Media Center
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
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19.7.41 Windows Media Player
This section contains recommendations related to Windows Media Player.
19.7.41.1 Networking
This section is intentionally blank and exists to ensure the structure of Windows
benchmarks is consistent.
19.7.41.2 Playback
This section contains recommendations related to Windows Media Player Playback.
19.7.41.2.1 (L2) Ensure 'Prevent Codec Download' is set to 'Enabled'
(Scored)
Profile Applicability:
 Level 2 - Domain Controller
 Level 2 - Member Server
Description:
This setting controls whether Windows Media Player is allowed to download additional
codecs for decoding media files it does not already understand.
The recommended state for this setting is: Enabled.
Rationale:
This has some potential for risk if a malicious data file is opened in Media Player that
requires an additional codec to be installed. If a special codec is required for a necessary
job function, then that codec should be tested and supplied by the IT department in the
organization.
Audit:
Navigate to the UI Path articulated in the Remediation section and confirm it is set as
prescribed. This group policy setting is backed by the following registry location:
HKEY_USERS\[USER
SID]\Software\Policies\Microsoft\WindowsMediaPlayer:PreventCodecDownload
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Remediation:
To establish the recommended configuration via GP, set the following UI path to Enabled:
User Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\Windows Components\Windows Media
Player\Playback\Prevent Codec Download
Impact:
If you enable this policy setting, the Player is prevented from automatically downloading
codecs to your computer. In addition, the Download codecs automatically check box on the
Player tab in the Player is not available.
Default Value:
Not Configured
References:
1. CCE-37445-4
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Control
1
1.1
1.1.1
1.1.2
1.1.3
1.1.4
1.1.5
1.1.6
1.2
1.2.1
1.2.2
1.2.3
2
2.1
2.2
2.2.1
2.2.2
2.2.3
2.2.4
2.2.5
2.2.6
2.2.7
2.2.8
Account Policies
Password Policy
(L1) Ensure 'Enforce password history' is set to '24 or more
password(s)' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Maximum password age' is set to '60 or fewer
days, but not 0' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Minimum password age' is set to '1 or more
day(s)' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Minimum password length' is set to '14 or more
character(s)' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Password must meet complexity requirements'
is set to 'Enabled' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Store passwords using reversible encryption' is
set to 'Disabled' (Scored)
Account Lockout Policy
(L1) Ensure 'Account lockout duration' is set to '15 or more
minute(s)' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Account lockout threshold' is set to '10 or fewer
invalid logon attempt(s), but not 0' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Reset account lockout counter after' is set to '15
or more minute(s)' (Scored)
Local Policies
Audit Policy
User Rights Assignment
(L1) Ensure 'Access Credential Manager as a trusted caller' is
set to 'No One' (Scored)
(L1) Configure 'Access this computer from the network'
(Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Act as part of the operating system' is set to 'No
One' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Add workstations to domain' is set to
'Administrators' (DC only) (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Adjust memory quotas for a process' is set to
'Administrators, LOCAL SERVICE, NETWORK SERVICE'
(Scored)
(L1) Configure 'Allow log on locally' (Scored)
(L1) Configure 'Allow log on through Remote Desktop
Services' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Back up files and directories' is set to
'Administrators' (Scored)
Set
Correctly
Yes No
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2.2.9
2.2.10
2.2.11
2.2.12
2.2.13
2.2.14
2.2.15
2.2.16
2.2.17
2.2.18
2.2.19
2.2.20
2.2.21
2.2.22
2.2.23
2.2.24
2.2.25
2.2.26
2.2.27
2.2.28
2.2.29
2.2.30
2.2.31
Set
Correctly
Yes No
(L1) Ensure 'Change the system time' is set to
'Administrators, LOCAL SERVICE' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Change the time zone' is set to 'Administrators,
LOCAL SERVICE' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Create a pagefile' is set to 'Administrators'
(Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Create a token object' is set to 'No One' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Create global objects' is set to 'Administrators,
LOCAL SERVICE, NETWORK SERVICE, SERVICE' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Create permanent shared objects' is set to 'No
One' (Scored)
(L1) Configure 'Create symbolic links' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Debug programs' is set to 'Administrators'
(Scored)
(L1) Configure 'Deny access to this computer from the
network' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Deny log on as a batch job' to include 'Guests'
(Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Deny log on as a service' to include 'Guests'
(Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Deny log on locally' to include 'Guests' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Deny log on through Remote Desktop Services'
to include 'Guests, Local account' (Scored)
(L1) Configure 'Enable computer and user accounts to be
trusted for delegation' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Force shutdown from a remote system' is set to
'Administrators' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Generate security audits' is set to 'LOCAL
SERVICE, NETWORK SERVICE' (Scored)
(L1) Configure 'Impersonate a client after authentication'
(Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Increase scheduling priority' is set to
'Administrators' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Load and unload device drivers' is set to
'Administrators' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Lock pages in memory' is set to 'No One'
(Scored)
(L2) Ensure 'Log on as a batch job' is set to 'Administrators'
(DC Only) (Scored)
(L1) Configure 'Manage auditing and security log' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Modify an object label' is set to 'No One' (Scored)
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2.2.32
2.2.33
2.2.34
2.2.35
2.2.36
2.2.37
2.2.38
2.2.39
2.2.40
2.3
2.3.1
2.3.1.1
2.3.1.2
2.3.1.3
2.3.1.4
2.3.1.5
2.3.1.6
2.3.2
2.3.2.1
2.3.2.2
2.3.3
2.3.4
2.3.4.1
(L1) Ensure 'Modify firmware environment values' is set to
'Administrators' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Perform volume maintenance tasks' is set to
'Administrators' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Profile single process' is set to 'Administrators'
(Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Profile system performance' is set to
'Administrators, NT SERVICE\WdiServiceHost' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Replace a process level token' is set to 'LOCAL
SERVICE, NETWORK SERVICE' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Restore files and directories' is set to
'Administrators' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Shut down the system' is set to 'Administrators'
(Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Synchronize directory service data' is set to 'No
One' (DC only) (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Take ownership of files or other objects' is set to
'Administrators' (Scored)
Security Options
Accounts
(L1) Ensure 'Accounts: Administrator account status' is set to
'Disabled' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Accounts: Block Microsoft accounts' is set to
'Users can't add or log on with Microsoft accounts' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Accounts: Guest account status' is set to
'Disabled' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Accounts: Limit local account use of blank
passwords to console logon only' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored)
(L1) Configure 'Accounts: Rename administrator account'
(Scored)
(L1) Configure 'Accounts: Rename guest account' (Scored)
Audit
(L1) Ensure 'Audit: Force audit policy subcategory settings
(Windows Vista or later) to override audit policy category
settings' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Audit: Shut down system immediately if unable
to log security audits' is set to 'Disabled' (Scored)
DCOM
Devices
(L1) Ensure 'Devices: Allowed to format and eject removable
media' is set to 'Administrators' (Scored)
Set
Correctly
Yes No
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2.3.4.2
2.3.5
2.3.5.1
2.3.5.2
2.3.5.3
2.3.6
2.3.6.1
2.3.6.2
2.3.6.3
2.3.6.4
2.3.6.5
2.3.6.6
2.3.7
2.3.7.1
2.3.7.2
2.3.7.3
2.3.7.4
2.3.7.5
2.3.7.6
2.3.7.7
(L1) Ensure 'Devices: Prevent users from installing printer
drivers' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored)
Domain controller
(L1) Ensure 'Domain controller: Allow server operators to
schedule tasks' is set to 'Disabled' (DC only) (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Domain controller: LDAP server signing
requirements' is set to 'Require signing' (DC only) (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Domain controller: Refuse machine account
password changes' is set to 'Disabled' (DC only) (Scored)
Domain member
(L1) Ensure 'Domain member: Digitally encrypt or sign
secure channel data (always)' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Domain member: Digitally encrypt secure
channel data (when possible)' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Domain member: Digitally sign secure channel
data (when possible)' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Domain member: Disable machine account
password changes' is set to 'Disabled' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Domain member: Maximum machine account
password age' is set to '30 or fewer days, but not 0' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Domain member: Require strong (Windows
2000 or later) session key' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored)
Interactive logon
(L1) Ensure 'Interactive logon: Do not display last user name'
is set to 'Enabled' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Interactive logon: Do not require
CTRL+ALT+DEL' is set to 'Disabled' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Interactive logon: Machine inactivity limit' is set
to '900 or fewer second(s), but not 0' (Scored)
(L1) Configure 'Interactive logon: Message text for users
attempting to log on' (Scored)
(L1) Configure 'Interactive logon: Message title for users
attempting to log on' (Scored)
(L2) Ensure 'Interactive logon: Number of previous logons to
cache (in case domain controller is not available)' is set to '4
or fewer logon(s)' (MS only) (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Interactive logon: Prompt user to change
password before expiration' is set to 'between 5 and 14 days'
(Scored)
Set
Correctly
Yes No
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2.3.7.8
2.3.7.9
2.3.8
2.3.8.1
2.3.8.2
2.3.8.3
2.3.9
2.3.9.1
2.3.9.2
2.3.9.3
2.3.9.4
2.3.9.5
2.3.10
2.3.10.1
2.3.10.2
2.3.10.3
2.3.10.4
2.3.10.5
2.3.10.6
Set
Correctly
Yes No
(L1) Ensure 'Interactive logon: Require Domain Controller
Authentication to unlock workstation' is set to 'Enabled' (MS
only) (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Interactive logon: Smart card removal behavior'
is set to 'Lock Workstation' or higher (Scored)
Microsoft network client
(L1) Ensure 'Microsoft network client: Digitally sign
communications (always)' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Microsoft network client: Digitally sign
communications (if server agrees)' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Microsoft network client: Send unencrypted
password to third-party SMB servers' is set to 'Disabled'
(Scored)
Microsoft network server
(L1) Ensure 'Microsoft network server: Amount of idle time
required before suspending session' is set to '15 or fewer
minute(s), but not 0' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Microsoft network server: Digitally sign
communications (always)' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Microsoft network server: Digitally sign
communications (if client agrees)' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Microsoft network server: Disconnect clients
when logon hours expire' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Microsoft network server: Server SPN target
name validation level' is set to 'Accept if provided by client' or
higher (Scored)
Network access
(L1) Ensure 'Network access: Allow anonymous SID/Name
translation' is set to 'Disabled' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Network access: Do not allow anonymous
enumeration of SAM accounts' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Network access: Do not allow anonymous
enumeration of SAM accounts and shares' is set to 'Enabled'
(Scored)
(L2) Ensure 'Network access: Do not allow storage of
passwords and credentials for network authentication' is set
to 'Enabled' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Network access: Let Everyone permissions apply
to anonymous users' is set to 'Disabled' (Scored)
(L1) Configure 'Network access: Named Pipes that can be
accessed anonymously' (Scored)
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688 | P a g e
Control
2.3.10.7
2.3.10.8
2.3.10.9
2.3.10.10
2.3.10.11
2.3.11
2.3.11.1
2.3.11.2
2.3.11.3
2.3.11.4
2.3.11.5
2.3.11.6
2.3.11.7
2.3.11.8
2.3.11.9
2.3.11.10
Set
Correctly
Yes No
(L1) Ensure 'Network access: Remotely accessible registry
paths' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Network access: Remotely accessible registry
paths and sub-paths' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Network access: Restrict anonymous access to
Named Pipes and Shares' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Network access: Shares that can be accessed
anonymously' is set to 'None' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Network access: Sharing and security model for
local accounts' is set to 'Classic - local users authenticate as
themselves' (Scored)
Network security
(L1) Ensure 'Network security: Allow Local System to use
computer identity for NTLM' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Network security: Allow LocalSystem NULL
session fallback' is set to 'Disabled' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Network Security: Allow PKU2U authentication
requests to this computer to use online identities' is set to
'Disabled' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Network Security: Configure encryption types
allowed for Kerberos' is set to 'RC4_HMAC_MD5,
AES128_HMAC_SHA1, AES256_HMAC_SHA1, Future
encryption types' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Network security: Do not store LAN Manager
hash value on next password change' is set to 'Enabled'
(Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Network security: Force logoff when logon hours
expire' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Network security: LAN Manager authentication
level' is set to 'Send NTLMv2 response only. Refuse LM &
NTLM' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Network security: LDAP client signing
requirements' is set to 'Negotiate signing' or higher (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Network security: Minimum session security for
NTLM SSP based (including secure RPC) clients' is set to
'Require NTLMv2 session security, Require 128-bit
encryption' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Network security: Minimum session security for
NTLM SSP based (including secure RPC) servers' is set to
'Require NTLMv2 session security, Require 128-bit
encryption' (Scored)
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689 | P a g e
Control
2.3.12
2.3.13
2.3.13.1
2.3.14
2.3.15
2.3.15.1
2.3.15.2
2.3.16
2.3.17
2.3.17.1
2.3.17.2
2.3.17.3
2.3.17.4
2.3.17.5
2.3.17.6
2.3.17.7
2.3.17.8
2.3.17.9
3
4
Recovery console
Shutdown
(L1) Ensure 'Shutdown: Allow system to be shut down
without having to log on' is set to 'Disabled' (Scored)
System cryptography
System objects
(L1) Ensure 'System objects: Require case insensitivity for
non-Windows subsystems' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'System objects: Strengthen default permissions
of internal system objects (e.g. Symbolic Links)' is set to
'Enabled' (Scored)
System settings
User Account Control
(L1) Ensure 'User Account Control: Admin Approval Mode for
the Built-in Administrator account' is set to 'Enabled'
(Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'User Account Control: Allow UIAccess
applications to prompt for elevation without using the secure
desktop' is set to 'Disabled' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'User Account Control: Behavior of the elevation
prompt for administrators in Admin Approval Mode' is set to
'Prompt for consent on the secure desktop' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'User Account Control: Behavior of the elevation
prompt for standard users' is set to 'Automatically deny
elevation requests' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'User Account Control: Detect application
installations and prompt for elevation' is set to 'Enabled'
(Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'User Account Control: Only elevate UIAccess
applications that are installed in secure locations' is set to
'Enabled' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'User Account Control: Run all administrators in
Admin Approval Mode' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'User Account Control: Switch to the secure
desktop when prompting for elevation' is set to 'Enabled'
(Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'User Account Control: Virtualize file and registry
write failures to per-user locations' is set to 'Enabled'
(Scored)
Event Log
Restricted Groups
Set
Correctly
Yes No
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690 | P a g e
Control
5
6
7
8
9
9.1
9.1.1
9.1.2
9.1.3
9.1.4
9.1.5
9.1.6
9.1.7
9.1.8
9.1.9
9.1.10
9.2
9.2.1
9.2.2
9.2.3
9.2.4
9.2.5
9.2.6
Set
Correctly
Yes No
System Services
Registry
File System
Wired Network (IEEE 802.3) Policies
Windows Firewall With Advanced Security
Domain Profile
(L1) Ensure 'Windows Firewall: Domain: Firewall state' is set
to 'On (recommended)' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Windows Firewall: Domain: Inbound
connections' is set to 'Block (default)' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Windows Firewall: Domain: Outbound
connections' is set to 'Allow (default)' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Windows Firewall: Domain: Settings: Display a
notification' is set to 'No' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Windows Firewall: Domain: Settings: Apply local
firewall rules' is set to 'Yes (default)' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Windows Firewall: Domain: Settings: Apply local
connection security rules' is set to 'Yes (default)' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Windows Firewall: Domain: Logging: Name' is
set to
'%SYSTEMROOT%\System32\logfiles\firewall\domainfw.log
' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Windows Firewall: Domain: Logging: Size limit
(KB)' is set to '16,384 KB or greater' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Windows Firewall: Domain: Logging: Log
dropped packets' is set to 'Yes' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Windows Firewall: Domain: Logging: Log
successful connections' is set to 'Yes' (Scored)
Private Profile
(L1) Ensure 'Windows Firewall: Private: Firewall state' is set
to 'On (recommended)' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Windows Firewall: Private: Inbound
connections' is set to 'Block (default)' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Windows Firewall: Private: Outbound
connections' is set to 'Allow (default)' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Windows Firewall: Private: Settings: Display a
notification' is set to 'No' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Windows Firewall: Private: Settings: Apply local
firewall rules' is set to 'Yes (default)' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Windows Firewall: Private: Settings: Apply local
connection security rules' is set to 'Yes (default)' (Scored)
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691 | P a g e
Control
9.2.7
9.2.8
9.2.9
9.2.10
9.3
9.3.1
9.3.2
9.3.3
9.3.4
9.3.5
9.3.6
9.3.7
9.3.8
9.3.9
9.3.10
10
11
12
13
14
15
16
17
Set
Correctly
Yes No
(L1) Ensure 'Windows Firewall: Private: Logging: Name' is set
to
'%SYSTEMROOT%\System32\logfiles\firewall\privatefw.log'
(Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Windows Firewall: Private: Logging: Size limit
(KB)' is set to '16,384 KB or greater' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Windows Firewall: Private: Logging: Log
dropped packets' is set to 'Yes' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Windows Firewall: Private: Logging: Log
successful connections' is set to 'Yes' (Scored)
Public Profile
(L1) Ensure 'Windows Firewall: Public: Firewall state' is set
to 'On (recommended)' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Windows Firewall: Public: Inbound connections'
is set to 'Block (default)' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Windows Firewall: Public: Outbound
connections' is set to 'Allow (default)' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Windows Firewall: Public: Settings: Display a
notification' is set to 'Yes' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Windows Firewall: Public: Settings: Apply local
firewall rules' is set to 'No' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Windows Firewall: Public: Settings: Apply local
connection security rules' is set to 'No' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Windows Firewall: Public: Logging: Name' is set
to
'%SYSTEMROOT%\System32\logfiles\firewall\publicfw.log'
(Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Windows Firewall: Public: Logging: Size limit
(KB)' is set to '16,384 KB or greater' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Windows Firewall: Public: Logging: Log dropped
packets' is set to 'Yes' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Windows Firewall: Public: Logging: Log
successful connections' is set to 'Yes' (Scored)
Network List Manager Policies
Wireless Network (IEEE 802.11) Policies
Public Key Policies
Software Restriction Policies
Network Access Protection NAP Client Configuration
Application Control Policies
IP Security Policies
Advanced Audit Policy Configuration
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692 | P a g e
Control
17.1
17.1.1
17.2
17.2.1
17.2.2
17.2.3
17.2.4
17.2.5
17.2.6
17.3
17.3.1
17.4
17.4.1
17.4.2
17.5
17.5.1
17.5.2
17.5.3
17.5.4
17.5.5
17.6
17.6.1
17.7
17.7.1
17.7.2
Set
Correctly
Yes No
Account Logon
(L1) Ensure 'Audit Credential Validation' is set to 'Success and
Failure' (Scored)
Account Management
(L1) Ensure 'Audit Application Group Management' is set to
'Success and Failure' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Audit Computer Account Management' is set to
'Success and Failure' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Audit Distribution Group Management' is set to
'Success and Failure' (DC only) (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Audit Other Account Management Events' is set
to 'Success and Failure' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Audit Security Group Management' is set to
'Success and Failure' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Audit User Account Management' is set to
'Success and Failure' (Scored)
Detailed Tracking
(L1) Ensure 'Audit Process Creation' is set to 'Success'
(Scored)
DS Access
(L1) Ensure 'Audit Directory Service Access' is set to 'Success
and Failure' (DC only) (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Audit Directory Service Changes' is set to
'Success and Failure' (DC only) (Scored)
Logon/Logoff
(L1) Ensure 'Audit Account Lockout' is set to 'Success'
(Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Audit Logoff' is set to 'Success' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Audit Logon' is set to 'Success and Failure'
(Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Audit Other Logon/Logoff Events' is set to
'Success and Failure' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Audit Special Logon' is set to 'Success' (Scored)
Object Access
(L1) Ensure 'Audit Removable Storage' is set to 'Success and
Failure' (Scored)
Policy Change
(L1) Ensure 'Audit Audit Policy Change' is set to 'Success and
Failure' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Audit Authentication Policy Change' is set to
'Success' (Scored)
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693 | P a g e
Control
17.8
17.8.1
17.9
17.9.1
17.9.2
17.9.3
17.9.4
17.9.5
18
18.1
18.1.1
18.1.1.1
18.1.1.2
18.2
18.2.1
18.2.2
18.2.3
18.2.4
18.2.5
18.2.6
18.3
18.3.1
Privilege Use
(L1) Ensure 'Audit Sensitive Privilege Use' is set to 'Success
and Failure' (Scored)
System
(L1) Ensure 'Audit IPsec Driver' is set to 'Success and Failure'
(Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Audit Other System Events' is set to 'Success and
Failure' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Audit Security State Change' is set to 'Success'
(Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Audit Security System Extension' is set to
'Success and Failure' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Audit System Integrity' is set to 'Success and
Failure' (Scored)
Administrative Templates (Computer)
Control Panel
Personalization
(L1) Ensure 'Prevent enabling lock screen camera' is set to
'Enabled' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Prevent enabling lock screen slide show' is set to
'Enabled' (Scored)
LAPS
(L1) Ensure LAPS AdmPwd GPO Extension / CSE is installed
(MS only) (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Do not allow password expiration time longer
than required by policy' is set to 'Enabled' (MS only) (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Enable Local Admin Password Management' is
set to 'Enabled' (MS only) (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Password Settings: Password Complexity' is set
to 'Enabled: Large letters + small letters + numbers + special
characters' (MS only) (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Password Settings: Password Length' is set to
'Enabled: 15 or more' (MS only) (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Password Settings: Password Age (Days)' is set
to 'Enabled: 30 or fewer' (MS only) (Scored)
MSS (Legacy)
(L1) Ensure 'MSS: (AutoAdminLogon) Enable Automatic
Logon (not recommended)' is set to 'Disabled' (Scored)
Set
Correctly
Yes No
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694 | P a g e
Control
18.3.2
18.3.3
18.3.4
18.3.5
18.3.6
18.3.7
18.3.8
18.3.9
18.3.10
18.3.11
18.3.12
18.4
18.4.1
18.4.2
18.4.3
18.4.4
18.4.5
Set
Correctly
Yes No
(L1) Ensure 'MSS: (DisableIPSourceRouting IPv6) IP source
routing protection level (protects against packet spoofing)' is
set to 'Enabled: Highest protection, source routing is
completely disabled' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'MSS: (DisableIPSourceRouting) IP source
routing protection level (protects against packet spoofing)' is
set to 'Enabled: Highest protection, source routing is
completely disabled' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'MSS: (EnableICMPRedirect) Allow ICMP
redirects to override OSPF generated routes' is set to
'Disabled' (Scored)
(L2) Ensure 'MSS: (KeepAliveTime) How often keep-alive
packets are sent in milliseconds' is set to 'Enabled: 300,000 or
5 minutes (recommended)' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'MSS: (NoNameReleaseOnDemand) Allow the
computer to ignore NetBIOS name release requests except
from WINS servers' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored)
(L2) Ensure 'MSS: (PerformRouterDiscovery) Allow IRDP to
detect and configure Default Gateway addresses (could lead
to DoS)' is set to 'Disabled' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'MSS: (SafeDllSearchMode) Enable Safe DLL
search mode (recommended)' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'MSS: (ScreenSaverGracePeriod) The time in
seconds before the screen saver grace period expires (0
recommended)' is set to 'Enabled: 5 or fewer seconds'
(Scored)
(L2) Ensure 'MSS: (TcpMaxDataRetransmissions IPv6) How
many times unacknowledged data is retransmitted' is set to
'Enabled: 3' (Scored)
(L2) Ensure 'MSS: (TcpMaxDataRetransmissions) How many
times unacknowledged data is retransmitted' is set to
'Enabled: 3' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'MSS: (WarningLevel) Percentage threshold for
the security event log at which the system will generate a
warning' is set to 'Enabled: 90% or less' (Scored)
Network
Background Intelligent Transfer Service (BITS)
BranchCache
DirectAccess Client Experience Settings
DNS Client
Hotspot Authentication
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695 | P a g e
Control
18.4.6
18.4.7
18.4.8
18.4.8.1
18.4.8.2
18.4.9
18.4.9.1
18.4.9.2
18.4.10
18.4.10.1
18.4.10.2
18.4.10.3
18.4.11
18.4.12
18.4.13
18.4.13.1
18.4.14
18.4.15
18.4.16
18.4.17
18.4.18
18.4.18.1
18.4.18.2
18.4.18.2.1
18.4.19
18.4.19.1
18.4.19.2
18.4.20
Lanman Server
Lanman Workstation
Link-Layer Topology Discovery
(L2) Ensure 'Turn on Mapper I/O (LLTDIO) driver' is set to
'Disabled' (Scored)
(L2) Ensure 'Turn on Responder (RSPNDR) driver' is set to
'Disabled' (Scored)
Microsoft Peer-to-Peer Networking Services
Peer Name Resolution Protocol
(L2) Ensure 'Turn off Microsoft Peer-to-Peer Networking
Services' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored)
Network Connections
Windows Firewall
(L1) Ensure 'Prohibit installation and configuration of
Network Bridge on your DNS domain network' is set to
'Enabled' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Require domain users to elevate when setting a
network's location' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored)
Network Connectivity Status Indicator
Network Isolation
Network Provider
(L1) Ensure 'Hardened UNC Paths' is set to 'Enabled, with
"Require Mutual Authentication" and "Require Integrity" set
for all NETLOGON and SYSVOL shares' (Scored)
Offline Files
QoS Packet Scheduler
SNMP
SSL Configuration Settings
TCPIP Settings
IPv6 Transition Technologies
Parameters
(L2) Disable IPv6 (Ensure TCPIP6 Parameter
'DisabledComponents' is set to '0xff (255)') (Scored)
Windows Connect Now
(L2) Ensure 'Configuration of wireless settings using
Windows Connect Now' is set to 'Disabled' (Scored)
(L2) Ensure 'Prohibit access of the Windows Connect Now
wizards' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored)
Windows Connection Manager
Set
Correctly
Yes No
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696 | P a g e
Control
18.4.20.1
18.4.20.2
18.5
18.6
18.6.1
18.6.2
18.7
18.8
18.8.1
18.8.2
18.8.2.1
18.8.3
18.8.4
18.8.5
18.8.6
18.8.7
18.8.8
18.8.9
18.8.10
18.8.11
18.8.11.1
18.8.12
18.8.13
18.8.14
18.8.15
18.8.16
18.8.17
18.8.18
18.8.18.1
18.8.18.2
(L1) Ensure 'Minimize the number of simultaneous
connections to the Internet or a Windows Domain' is set to
'Enabled' (Scored)
(L2) Ensure 'Prohibit connection to non-domain networks
when connected to domain authenticated network' is set to
'Enabled' (MS only) (Scored)
Printers
SCM: Pass the Hash Mitigations
(L1) Ensure 'Apply UAC restrictions to local accounts on
network logons' is set to 'Enabled' (MS only) (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'WDigest Authentication' is set to 'Disabled'
(Scored)
Start Menu and Taskbar
System
Access-Denied Assistance
Audit Process Creation
(L1) Ensure 'Include command line in process creation
events' is set to 'Disabled' (Scored)
Credentials Delegation
Device Guard
Device Installation
Device Redirection
Disk NV Cache
Disk Quotas
Distributed COM
Driver Installation
Early Launch Antimalware
(L1) Ensure 'Boot-Start Driver Initialization Policy' is set to
'Enabled: Good, unknown and bad but critical' (Scored)
Enhanced Storage Access
File Classification Infrastructure
File Share Shadow Copy Agent
File Share Shadow Copy Provider
Filesystem
Folder Redirection
Group Policy
Logging and tracing
(L1) Ensure 'Configure registry policy processing: Do not
apply during periodic background processing' is set to
'Enabled: FALSE' (Scored)
Set
Correctly
Yes No
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697 | P a g e
Control
18.8.18.3
18.8.18.4
18.8.19
18.8.19.1
18.8.19.1.1
18.8.19.1.2
18.8.19.1.3
18.8.19.1.4
18.8.19.1.5
18.8.19.1.6
18.8.19.1.7
18.8.19.1.8
18.8.19.1.9
18.8.19.1.10
18.8.19.1.11
18.8.19.1.12
18.8.19.1.13
18.8.19.1.14
18.8.20
18.8.21
18.8.22
18.8.23
(L1) Ensure 'Configure registry policy processing: Process
even if the Group Policy objects have not changed' is set to
'Enabled: TRUE' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Turn off background refresh of Group Policy' is
set to 'Disabled' (Scored)
Internet Communication Management
Internet Communication settings
(L2) Ensure 'Turn off access to the Store' is set to 'Enabled'
(Scored)
(L2) Ensure 'Turn off downloading of print drivers over
HTTP' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored)
(L2) Ensure 'Turn off handwriting personalization data
sharing' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored)
(L2) Ensure 'Turn off handwriting recognition error
reporting' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored)
(L2) Ensure 'Turn off Internet Connection Wizard if URL
connection is referring to Microsoft.com' is set to 'Enabled'
(Scored)
(L2) Ensure 'Turn off Internet download for Web publishing
and online ordering wizards' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored)
(L2) Ensure 'Turn off printing over HTTP' is set to 'Enabled'
(Scored)
(L2) Ensure 'Turn off Registration if URL connection is
referring to Microsoft.com' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored)
(L2) Ensure 'Turn off Search Companion content file updates'
is set to 'Enabled' (Scored)
(L2) Ensure 'Turn off the "Order Prints" picture task' is set to
'Enabled' (Scored)
(L2) Ensure 'Turn off the "Publish to Web" task for files and
folders' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored)
(L2) Ensure 'Turn off the Windows Messenger Customer
Experience Improvement Program' is set to 'Enabled'
(Scored)
(L2) Ensure 'Turn off Windows Customer Experience
Improvement Program' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored)
(L2) Ensure 'Turn off Windows Error Reporting' is set to
'Enabled' (Scored)
iSCSI
KDC
Kerberos
Locale Services
Set
Correctly
Yes No
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698 | P a g e
Control
18.8.23.1
18.8.24
18.8.24.1
18.8.24.2
18.8.24.3
18.8.24.4
18.8.24.5
18.8.25
18.8.26
18.8.27
18.8.28
18.8.28.1
18.8.28.2
18.8.28.3
18.8.28.4
18.8.28.4.1
18.8.28.4.2
18.8.29
18.8.30
18.8.30.1
18.8.30.2
18.8.31
18.8.31.1
18.8.31.2
18.8.32
18.8.33
18.8.34
18.8.35
(L2) Ensure 'Disallow copying of user input methods to the
system account for sign-in' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored)
Logon
(L1) Ensure 'Do not display network selection UI' is set to
'Enabled' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Do not enumerate connected users on domainjoined computers' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Enumerate local users on domain-joined
computers' is set to 'Disabled' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Turn off app notifications on the lock screen' is
set to 'Enabled' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Turn on convenience PIN sign-in' is set to
'Disabled' (Scored)
Mitigation Options
Net Logon
Performance Control Panel
Power Management
Button Settings
Hard Disk Settings
Notification Settings
Sleep Settings
(L2) Ensure 'Require a password when a computer wakes (on
battery)' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored)
(L2) Ensure 'Require a password when a computer wakes
(plugged in)' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored)
Recovery
Remote Assistance
(L1) Ensure 'Configure Offer Remote Assistance' is set to
'Disabled' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Configure Solicited Remote Assistance' is set to
'Disabled' (Scored)
Remote Procedure Call
(L1) Ensure 'Enable RPC Endpoint Mapper Client
Authentication' is set to 'Enabled' (MS only) (Scored)
(L2) Ensure 'Restrict Unauthenticated RPC clients' is set to
'Enabled: Authenticated' (MS only) (Scored)
Removable Storage Access
Scripts
Server Manager
Shutdown
Set
Correctly
Yes No
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699 | P a g e
Control
18.8.36
18.8.37
18.8.38
18.8.38.1
18.8.38.2
18.8.38.3
18.8.38.4
18.8.38.5
18.8.38.5.1
18.8.38.6
18.8.38.7
18.8.38.8
18.8.38.9
18.8.38.10
18.8.38.11
18.8.38.11.1
18.8.39
18.8.40
18.8.41
18.8.42
18.8.43
18.8.43.1
18.8.43.1.1
18.8.43.1.2
18.9
18.9.1
18.9.2
18.9.3
18.9.4
18.9.5
18.9.6
18.9.6.1
18.9.7
18.9.8
Shutdown Options
System Restore
Troubleshooting and Diagnostics
Application Compatibility Diagnostics
Corrupted File Recovery
Disk Diagnostic
Fault Tolerant Heap
Microsoft Support Diagnostic Tool
(L2) Ensure 'Microsoft Support Diagnostic Tool: Turn on
MSDT interactive communication with support provider' is
set to 'Disabled' (Scored)
MSI Corrupted File Recovery
Scheduled Maintenance
Scripted Diagnostics
Windows Boot Performance Diagnostics
Windows Memory Leak Diagnosis
Windows Performance PerfTrack
(L2) Ensure 'Enable/Disable PerfTrack' is set to 'Disabled'
(Scored)
Trusted Platform Module Services
User Profiles
Windows File Protection
Windows HotStart
Windows Time Service
Time Providers
(L2) Ensure 'Enable Windows NTP Client' is set to 'Enabled'
(Scored)
(L2) Ensure 'Enable Windows NTP Server' is set to 'Disabled'
(MS only) (Scored)
Windows Components
Active Directory Federation Services
ActiveX Installer Service
Add features to Windows 8 / 8.1 / 10
App Package Deployment
App Privacy
App runtime
(L1) Ensure 'Allow Microsoft accounts to be optional' is set to
'Enabled' (Scored)
Application Compatibility
AutoPlay Policies
Set
Correctly
Yes No
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700 | P a g e
Control
18.9.8.1
18.9.8.2
18.9.8.3
18.9.9
18.9.10
18.9.11
18.9.12
18.9.13
18.9.13.1
18.9.13.2
18.9.14
18.9.15
18.9.16
18.9.17
18.9.18
18.9.19
18.9.20
18.9.21
18.9.22
18.9.22.1
18.9.22.2
18.9.22.3
18.9.22.4
18.9.22.5
18.9.22.6
18.9.22.7
18.9.22.8
18.9.23
(L1) Ensure 'Disallow Autoplay for non-volume devices' is set
to 'Enabled' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Set the default behavior for AutoRun' is set to
'Enabled: Do not execute any autorun commands' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Turn off Autoplay' is set to 'Enabled: All drives'
(Scored)
Backup
Biometrics
BitLocker Drive Encryption
Cloud Content
Credential User Interface
(L1) Ensure 'Do not display the password reveal button' is set
to 'Enabled' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Enumerate administrator accounts on elevation'
is set to 'Disabled' (Scored)
Data Collection and Preview Builds
Delivery Optimization
Desktop Gadgets
Desktop Window Manager
Device and Driver Compatibility
Device Registration (formerly Workplace Join)
Digital Locker
Edge UI
EMET
(L1) Ensure 'EMET 5.5' or higher is installed (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Default Action and Mitigation Settings' is set to
'Enabled' (plus subsettings) (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Default Protections for Internet Explorer' is set
to 'Enabled' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Default Protections for Popular Software' is set
to 'Enabled' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Default Protections for Recommended Software'
is set to 'Enabled' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'System ASLR' is set to 'Enabled: Application OptIn' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'System DEP' is set to 'Enabled: Application OptOut' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'System SEHOP' is set to 'Enabled: Application
Opt-Out' (Scored)
Event Forwarding
Set
Correctly
Yes No
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
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701 | P a g e
Control
18.9.24
18.9.24.1
18.9.24.1.1
18.9.24.1.2
18.9.24.2
18.9.24.2.1
18.9.24.2.2
18.9.24.3
18.9.24.3.1
18.9.24.3.2
18.9.24.4
18.9.24.4.1
18.9.24.4.2
18.9.25
18.9.26
18.9.27
18.9.28
18.9.28.1
18.9.28.2
18.9.28.3
18.9.28.4
18.9.28.5
18.9.29
18.9.30
18.9.31
18.9.32
Event Log Service
Application
(L1) Ensure 'Application: Control Event Log behavior when
the log file reaches its maximum size' is set to 'Disabled'
(Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Application: Specify the maximum log file size
(KB)' is set to 'Enabled: 32,768 or greater' (Scored)
Security
(L1) Ensure 'Security: Control Event Log behavior when the
log file reaches its maximum size' is set to 'Disabled' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Security: Specify the maximum log file size (KB)'
is set to 'Enabled: 196,608 or greater' (Scored)
Setup
(L1) Ensure 'Setup: Control Event Log behavior when the log
file reaches its maximum size' is set to 'Disabled' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Setup: Specify the maximum log file size (KB)' is
set to 'Enabled: 32,768 or greater' (Scored)
System
(L1) Ensure 'System: Control Event Log behavior when the
log file reaches its maximum size' is set to 'Disabled' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'System: Specify the maximum log file size (KB)'
is set to 'Enabled: 32,768 or greater' (Scored)
Event Logging
Event Viewer
Family Safety
File Explorer
Previous Versions
(L1) Ensure 'Configure Windows SmartScreen' is set to
'Enabled: Require approval from an administrator before
running downloaded unknown software' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Turn off Data Execution Prevention for Explorer'
is set to 'Disabled' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Turn off heap termination on corruption' is set
to 'Disabled' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Turn off shell protocol protected mode' is set to
'Disabled' (Scored)
File History
Game Explorer
HomeGroup
Import Video
Set
Correctly
Yes No
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702 | P a g e
Control
18.9.33
18.9.34
18.9.35
18.9.35.1
18.9.36
18.9.37
18.9.38
18.9.39
18.9.40
18.9.41
18.9.42
18.9.43
18.9.44
18.9.45
18.9.46
18.9.47
18.9.48
18.9.48.1
18.9.48.2
18.9.48.2.1
18.9.48.2.2
18.9.48.3
18.9.48.3.1
18.9.48.3.2
18.9.48.3.2.1
18.9.48.3.3
18.9.48.3.3.1
18.9.48.3.3.2
18.9.48.3.3.3
18.9.48.3.3.4
18.9.48.3.4
18.9.48.3.5
18.9.48.3.6
Internet Explorer
Internet Information Services
Location and Sensors
(L2) Ensure 'Turn off location' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored)
Maintenance Scheduler
Maps
Microsoft Edge
Microsoft Passport for Work
NetMeeting
Network Access Protection
Network Projector
OneDrive
Online Assistance
Password Synchronization
Portable Operating System
Presentation Settings
Remote Desktop Services (formerly Terminal Services)
RD Licensing
Remote Desktop Connection Client
RemoteFX USB Device Redirection
(L1) Ensure 'Do not allow passwords to be saved' is set to
'Enabled' (Scored)
Remote Desktop Session Host
Application Compatibility
Connections
(L2) Ensure 'Restrict Remote Desktop Services users to a
single Remote Desktop Services session' is set to 'Enabled'
(Scored)
Device and Resource Redirection
(L2) Ensure 'Do not allow COM port redirection' is set to
'Enabled' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Do not allow drive redirection' is set to 'Enabled'
(Scored)
(L2) Ensure 'Do not allow LPT port redirection' is set to
'Enabled' (Scored)
(L2) Ensure 'Do not allow supported Plug and Play device
redirection' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored)
Licensing
Printer Redirection
Profiles
Set
Correctly
Yes No
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703 | P a g e
Control
18.9.48.3.7
18.9.48.3.8
18.9.48.3.9
18.9.48.3.9.1
18.9.48.3.9.2
18.9.48.3.9.3
18.9.48.3.10
18.9.48.3.10.1
18.9.48.3.10.2
18.9.48.3.11
18.9.48.3.11.1
18.9.48.3.11.2
18.9.49
18.9.49.1
18.9.50
18.9.50.1
18.9.50.2
18.9.50.3
18.9.51
18.9.52
18.9.53
18.9.54
18.9.54.1
18.9.55
18.9.56
18.9.56.1
18.9.57
Set
Correctly
Yes No
RD Connection Broker
Remote Session Environment
Security
(L1) Ensure 'Always prompt for password upon connection' is
set to 'Enabled' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Require secure RPC communication' is set to
'Enabled' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Set client connection encryption level' is set to
'Enabled: High Level' (Scored)
Session Time Limits
(L2) Ensure 'Set time limit for active but idle Remote Desktop
Services sessions' is set to 'Enabled: 15 minutes or less'
(Scored)
(L2) Ensure 'Set time limit for disconnected sessions' is set to
'Enabled: 1 minute' (Scored)
Temporary folders
(L1) Ensure 'Do not delete temp folders upon exit' is set to
'Disabled' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Do not use temporary folders per session' is set
to 'Disabled' (Scored)
RSS Feeds
(L1) Ensure 'Prevent downloading of enclosures' is set to
'Enabled' (Scored)
Search
OCR
(L1) Ensure 'Allow indexing of encrypted files' is set to
'Disabled' (Scored)
(L2) Ensure 'Set what information is shared in Search' is set
to 'Enabled: Anonymous info' (Scored)
Security Center
Server for NIS
Shutdown Options
SkyDrive
(L1) Ensure 'Prevent the usage of SkyDrive for file storage' is
set to 'Enabled' (Scored)
Smart Card
Software Protection Platform
(L2) Ensure 'Turn off KMS Client Online AVS Validation' is set
to 'Enabled' (Scored)
Sound Recorder
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704 | P a g e
Control
18.9.58
18.9.58.1
18.9.58.2
18.9.58.3
18.9.59
18.9.60
18.9.61
18.9.62
18.9.63
18.9.64
18.9.65
18.9.66
18.9.66.1
18.9.66.2
18.9.66.3
18.9.66.3.1
18.9.67
18.9.67.1
18.9.67.2
18.9.67.2.1
18.9.67.3
18.9.68
18.9.69
18.9.69.1
18.9.69.2
18.9.69.3
18.9.70
18.9.70.1
18.9.71
18.9.72
18.9.73
Store
(L1) Ensure 'Turn off Automatic Download and Install of
updates' is set to 'Disabled' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Turn off the offer to update to the latest version
of Windows' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored)
(L2) Ensure 'Turn off the Store application' is set to 'Enabled'
(Scored)
Sync your settings
Tablet PC
Task Scheduler
Text Input
Windows Calendar
Windows Color System
Windows Customer Experience Improvement Program
Windows Defender
Client Interface
Exclusions
MAPS
(L2) Ensure 'Join Microsoft MAPS' is set to 'Disabled' (Scored)
Windows Error Reporting
Advanced Error Reporting Settings
Consent
(L1) Ensure 'Configure Default consent' is set to 'Enabled:
Always ask before sending data' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Automatically send memory dumps for OSgenerated error reports' is set to 'Disabled' (Scored)
Windows Game Recording and Broadcasting
Windows Installer
(L1) Ensure 'Allow user control over installs' is set to
'Disabled' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Always install with elevated privileges' is set to
'Disabled' (Scored)
(L2) Ensure 'Prevent Internet Explorer security prompt for
Windows Installer scripts' is set to 'Disabled' (Scored)
Windows Logon Options
(L1) Ensure 'Sign-in last interactive user automatically after a
system-initiated restart' is set to 'Disabled' (Scored)
Windows Mail
Windows Media Center
Windows Media Digital Rights Management
Set
Correctly
Yes No
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705 | P a g e
Control
18.9.74
18.9.75
18.9.76
18.9.77
18.9.78
18.9.79
18.9.79.1
18.9.79.2
18.9.80
18.9.81
18.9.81.1
18.9.81.1.1
18.9.81.1.2
18.9.81.1.3
18.9.81.2
18.9.81.2.1
18.9.81.2.2
18.9.81.2.3
18.9.82
18.9.82.1
18.9.83
18.9.84
18.9.85
18.9.85.1
18.9.85.2
18.9.85.3
19
Set
Correctly
Yes No
Windows Media Player
Windows Meeting Space
Windows Messenger
Windows Mobility Center
Windows Movie Maker
Windows PowerShell
(L1) Ensure 'Turn on PowerShell Script Block Logging' is set
to 'Disabled' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Turn on PowerShell Transcription' is set to
'Disabled' (Scored)
Windows Reliability Analysis
Windows Remote Management (WinRM)
WinRM Client
(L1) Ensure 'Allow Basic authentication' is set to 'Disabled'
(Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Allow unencrypted traffic' is set to 'Disabled'
(Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Disallow Digest authentication' is set to
'Enabled' (Scored)
WinRM Service
(L1) Ensure 'Allow Basic authentication' is set to 'Disabled'
(Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Allow unencrypted traffic' is set to 'Disabled'
(Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Disallow WinRM from storing RunAs credentials'
is set to 'Enabled' (Scored)
Windows Remote Shell
(L2) Ensure 'Allow Remote Shell Access' is set to 'Disabled'
(Scored)
Windows SideShow
Windows System Resource Manager
Windows Update
(L1) Ensure 'Configure Automatic Updates' is set to 'Enabled'
(Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Configure Automatic Updates: Scheduled install
day' is set to '0 - Every day' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'No auto-restart with logged on users for
scheduled automatic updates installations' is set to 'Disabled'
(Scored)
Administrative Templates (User)
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706 | P a g e
Control
19.1
19.1.1
19.1.2
19.1.3
19.1.3.1
19.1.3.2
19.1.3.3
19.1.3.4
19.2
19.3
19.4
19.5
19.5.1
19.5.1.1
19.6
19.6.1
19.6.2
19.6.3
19.6.4
19.6.5
19.6.5.1
19.6.5.1.1
19.7
19.7.1
19.7.2
19.7.3
19.7.4
19.7.4.1
19.7.4.2
19.7.5
19.7.6
19.7.7
19.7.8
Control Panel
Add or Remove Programs
Display
Personalization
(L1) Ensure 'Enable screen saver' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Force specific screen saver: Screen saver
executable name' is set to 'Enabled: scrnsave.scr' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Password protect the screen saver' is set to
'Enabled' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Screen saver timeout' is set to 'Enabled: 900
seconds or fewer, but not 0' (Scored)
Desktop
Network
Shared Folders
Start Menu and Taskbar
Notifications
(L1) Ensure 'Turn off toast notifications on the lock screen' is
set to 'Enabled' (Scored)
System
Ctrl+Alt+Del Options
Driver Installation
Folder Redirection
Group Policy
Internet Communication Management
Internet Communication settings
(L2) Ensure 'Turn off Help Experience Improvement
Program' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored)
Windows Components
Add features to Windows 8 / 8.1 / 10
App runtime
Application Compatibility
Attachment Manager
(L1) Ensure 'Do not preserve zone information in file
attachments' is set to 'Disabled' (Scored)
(L1) Ensure 'Notify antivirus programs when opening
attachments' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored)
AutoPlay Policies
Backup
Credential User Interface
Desktop Gadgets
Set
Correctly
Yes No
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












707 | P a g e
Control
19.7.9
19.7.10
19.7.11
19.7.12
19.7.13
19.7.14
19.7.15
19.7.16
19.7.17
19.7.18
19.7.19
19.7.20
19.7.21
19.7.22
19.7.23
19.7.24
19.7.25
19.7.25.1
19.7.26
19.7.27
19.7.28
19.7.29
19.7.30
19.7.31
19.7.32
19.7.33
19.7.34
19.7.35
19.7.36
19.7.37
19.7.37.1
19.7.38
19.7.39
19.7.40
19.7.41
19.7.41.1
19.7.41.2
Desktop Windows Manager
Digital Locker
Edge UI
EMET
File Explorer
File Revocation
IME
Import Video
Instant Search
Internet Explorer
Location and Sensors
Microsoft Edge
Microsoft Management Console
Microsoft Passport for Work
NetMeeting
Network Projector
Network Sharing
(L1) Ensure 'Prevent users from sharing files within their
profile.' is set to 'Enabled' (Scored)
Presentation Settings
Remote Desktop Services
RSS Feeds
Search
Sound Recorder
Store
Tablet PC
Task Scheduler
Windows Calendar
Windows Color System
Windows Error Reporting
Windows Installer
(L1) Ensure 'Always install with elevated privileges' is set to
'Disabled' (Scored)
Windows Logon Options
Windows Mail
Windows Media Center
Windows Media Player
Networking
Playback
Set
Correctly
Yes No




708 | P a g e
Control
19.7.41.2.1
(L2) Ensure 'Prevent Codec Download' is set to 'Enabled'
(Scored)
Set
Correctly
Yes No


709 | P a g e
Appendix: Change History
Date
Version
Changes for this version
09-15-2014
1.0.0
Initial Public Release
11-03-2014
1.1.0
Clarify 0 is not a conformant state per Tickets
#236, #238, #248
11-03-2014
1.1.0
Recommend 'Accounts: Block Microsoft
accounts' per Ticket #239
11-03-2014
1.1.0
Recommend ' Guest account status' per Ticket
#240
11-03-2014
1.1.0
Add rename guest to DC profile per Ticket
#244
11-03-2014
1.1.0
Update registry value name delimiter per
Tickets #250, #252, #254, #256, #258, #259
11-03-2014
1.1.0
Clarify that more aggressive states are
conformant per Tickets #262 and #265
11-03-2014
1.1.0
Recommend 'Named Pipes that can be
accessed anonymously' per Ticket #267
11-03-2014
1.1.0
Recommend 'Shares that can be accessed
anonymously' per Ticket #269
11-03-2014
1.1.0
Clarify auto update delay per Ticket #271
11-03-2014
1.1.0
Remove 'Clear virtual member pagefile' per
Ticket #272
11-03-2014
1.1.0
Remove redundant text from audit
recommendations per Ticket #275
11-03-2014
1.1.0
Remove 'Only elevate executables that are
signed and validated' per Ticket #277
11-03-2014
1.1.0
Add policy background refresh
recommendations per Tickets #278 and #279
710 | P a g e
Date
Version
Changes for this version
11-03-2014
1.1.0
Recommend 'Boot-Start Driver Initialization
Policy' per Ticket #280
11-03-2014
1.1.0
Add 'Network Security: Allow PKU2U
authentication requests to this computer to
use online identities' per Ticket #281
11-03-2014
1.1.0
Recommend allowed Kerberos encryption
types per Ticket #282
11-03-2014
1.1.0
Recommend UAC elevation behaviors per
Ticket #283 and 284
11-03-2014
1.1.0
Remove 'No Auditing' recommendations per
Tickets #285 and #286
11-03-2014
1.1.0
Recommend 'Audit Other Logon/Logoff
Events' per Ticket #289
11-03-2014
1.1.0
Recommend 'Do not allow passwords to be
saved' per Ticket #291
11-03-2014
1.1.0
Recommend 'Do not allow drive redirection'
per Ticket #292
11-03-2014
1.1.0
Recommend 'Always prompt for password
upon connection' per Ticket #293
11-03-2014
1.1.0
Recommend client connection encryption
level per Ticket #294
11-03-2014
1.1.0
Add WinRM recommendations per Ticket
#295
11-03-2014
1.1.0
Add recommendations to DC profile per
Tickets #296 and #297
11-03-2014
1.1.0
Remove toast notification recommendation
per Ticket #298
711 | P a g e
Date
Version
Changes for this version
11-03-2014
1.1.0
Add Attachment Manager recommendations
per Ticket #299
11-03-2014
1.1.0
Add Internet Communication Management
recommendations per Ticket #300
11-03-2014
1.1.0
Recommend 'Audit Other System Events' per
Ticket #301
11-03-2014
1.1.0
Recommend 'Audit Removable Storage ' per
Ticker #302
11-03-2014
1.1.0
Recommend 'Audit Computer Account
Management' per Ticket #303
11-03-2014
1.1.0
Remove 'Server' section per Ticket #310
09-30-2015
2.0.0
(L1) Remove “Interactive logon: Number of
previous logons to cache (in case domain
controller is not available)” = Enabled from DC
profile
Ticket #263
09-30-2015
2.0.0
(L1) Add "Exchange Servers" group to
"Manage auditing and security logs" to DC
profile
Ticket #320
09-30-2015
2.0.0
(L1) Modify "Microsoft network server:
Amount of idle time required before
suspending session" to disqualify 0 as
acceptable value.
Ticket #322
712 | P a g e
Date
Version
Changes for this version
09-30-2015
2.0.0
(L1) Remove "Apply UAC restrictions to local
accounts on network logons" = Enabled from
DC profile.
Ticket #324
09-30-2015
2.0.0
(L1) Add "Accounts: Administrator account
status" = Disabled
Ticket #329
09-30-2015
2.0.0
(L1) Add “Do not enumerate connected users
on domain-joined computers” = Enabled
Ticket #331
09-30-2015
2.0.0
(L1) Add “Enumerate local users on domainjoined computers” = Disabled
Ticket #332
09-30-2015
2.0.0
(L1) Add “Turn on PIN sign-in” = Disabled
Ticket #333
09-30-2015
2.0.0
(L1) Add "Enumerate administrator accounts
on elevation" = Disabled
Ticket #334
09-30-2015
2.0.0
(L1) Add “Configure Windows SmartScreen” =
Enabled:Require approval from an
administrator before running downloaded
unknown software
Ticket #335
09-30-2015
2.0.0
(L1) Add “Turn off Data Execution Prevention
for Explorer” = Disabled
Ticket #336
713 | P a g e
Date
Version
Changes for this version
09-30-2015
2.0.0
(L1) Permit stronger values for 'Interactive
logon: Smart card removal behavior'
Ticket #337
09-30-2015
2.0.0
(L1) Add "Interactive logon: Require Domain
Controller Authentication to unlock
workstations" = Enabled to MS profile
Ticket #340
09-30-2015
2.0.0
(L1) Add "Hardened UNC Paths" to protect
NETLOGON and SYSVOL (MS15-011 /
KB3000483)
Ticket #343
09-30-2015
2.0.0
(L2) Add MSS: KeepAliveTime = 3
Ticket #346
09-30-2015
2.0.0
(L2) Add MSS: NoNameReleaseOnDemand =
Enabled
Ticket #348
09-30-2015
2.0.0
(L2) Add MSS: PerformRouterDiscovery =
Disabled
Ticket #350
09-30-2015
2.0.0
(L2) Add MSS: TcpMaxDataRetransmission
IPv6 = 3
Ticket #352
09-30-2015
2.0.0
(L2) Add MSS: TcpMaxDataRetransmission = 3
Ticket #354
714 | P a g e
Date
Version
Changes for this version
09-30-2015
2.0.0
(L2) Add "Network access: Do not allow
storage of passwords and credentials for
network authentication" = Enabled
Ticket #356
09-30-2015
2.0.0
(L2) Add "Turn off Microsoft Peer-to-Peer
Networking Services" = Enabled
Ticket #367
09-30-2015
2.0.0
(L1) Add "Prohibit installation and
configuration of Network Bridge on your DNS
domain network" = Enabled
Ticket #368
09-30-2015
2.0.0
(L1) Add "Require domain users to elevate
when setting a network's location" = Enabled
Ticket #370
09-30-2015
2.0.0
(L2) Add "Configuration of wireless settings
using Windows Connect Now" = Disabled
Ticket #371
09-30-2015
2.0.0
(L2) Add "Prohibit Access of the Windows
Connect Now wizards" = Enabled
Ticket #372
09-30-2015
2.0.0
(L1) Add "Turn off background refresh of
Group Policy" = Disabled
Ticket #374
09-30-2015
2.0.0
(L1) Add "Turn off shell protocol protected
mode" = Disabled
Ticket #375
715 | P a g e
Date
Version
Changes for this version
09-30-2015
2.0.0
(L1) Add "Do not use temporary folders per
session" = Disabled
Ticket #376
09-30-2015
2.0.0
(L1) Clarify 'Allow log on through Remote
Desktop Services' - listed principals are white
listed, not required
Ticket #378
09-30-2015
2.0.0
(L1) Add "ENTERPRISE DOMAIN
CONTROLLERS" to "Allow log on locally" to DC
profile for Active Directory Domain Services
Role
Ticket #379
09-30-2015
2.0.0
(L1) Clarify "Devices: Allowed to format and
eject removable media" language
Ticket #380
09-30-2015
2.0.0
(L2) Add “Require Password When a
Computer Wakes” = Enabled (both “On
Battery” and “Plugged In”)
Ticket #382
09-30-2015
2.0.0
(L1) Add “Turn off toast notifications on the
lock screen” = Enabled
Ticket #383
09-30-2015
2.0.0
(L1) Permit stronger values for 'Interactive
logon: Smart card removal behavior'
Ticket #385
716 | P a g e
Date
Version
Changes for this version
09-30-2015
2.0.0
(L1) Correct "Always install with elevated
privileges" = Disabled remediation and crossreference
Ticket #386
09-30-2015
2.0.0
(L1) Add "Do not display the password reveal
button" = Enabled
Ticket #387
09-30-2015
2.0.0
(L2) Add "Turn off heap termination on
corruption" = Disabled
Ticket #388
09-30-2015
2.0.0
(L1) Add "Turn off shell protocol protected
mode" = Disabled
Ticket #389
09-30-2015
2.0.0
(L1) Add "Prevent the usage of OneDrive for
file storage" = Enabled
Ticket #390
09-30-2015
2.0.0
(L2) Add "Set what information is shared in
Search" = Enabled:Anonymous info
Ticket #391
09-30-2015
2.0.0
(L2) Add "Set what information is shared in
Search" = Enabled:Anonymous info
Ticket #391
09-30-2015
2.0.0
(L2) Add "Join Microsoft MAPS" = Disabled
Ticket #392
717 | P a g e
Date
Version
Changes for this version
09-30-2015
2.0.0
(L2) Add "Prevent Internet Explorer security
prompt for Windows Installer scripts" =
Disabled
Ticket #393
09-30-2015
2.0.0
(L1) Add "Turn off app notifications on the
lock screen" = Enabled
Ticket #395
09-30-2015
2.0.0
(L2) Add "Enable/Disable PerfTrack" =
Disabled
Ticket #396
09-30-2015
2.0.0
(L2) Add "Enable Windows NTP Client" =
Enabled
Ticket #397
09-30-2015
2.0.0
(L2) Add "Enable Windows NTP Server" =
Disabled
Ticket #398
09-30-2015
2.0.0
17.2 - Audit Application Group Management
Ticket #399
09-30-2015
2.0.0
(L2) Add "Disallow Autoplay for non-volume
devices" = Enabled
Ticket #400
09-30-2015
2.0.0
(L2) Add "Turn on Mapper I/O (LLTDIO)
driver" = Disabled
Ticket #401
718 | P a g e
Date
Version
Changes for this version
09-30-2015
2.0.0
(L2) Add "Turn on Responder (RSPNDR)
driver" = Disabled
Ticket #402
09-30-2015
2.0.0
(L2) Add "Restrict Remote Desktop Services
users to a single Remote Desktop Services
session" = Enabled
Ticket #404
09-30-2015
2.0.0
(L2) Add "Do not allow COM port redirection"
= Enabled
Ticket #405
09-30-2015
2.0.0
(L2) Add "Do not allow LPT port redirection" =
Enabled
Ticket #406
09-30-2015
2.0.0
(L2) Add "Do not allow supported Plug and
Play device redirection" = Enabled
Ticket #407
09-30-2015
2.0.0
(L1) Add "Require secure RPC
communication" = Enabled
Ticket #408
09-30-2015
2.0.0
(L2) Add "Set time limit for active but idle
Remote Desktop Services sessions" =
Enabled:15 minutes or less
Ticket #409
09-30-2015
2.0.0
(L2) Add "Set time limit for disconnected
sessions" = Enabled:1 minute or less
Ticket #410
719 | P a g e
Date
Version
Changes for this version
09-30-2015
2.0.0
(L2) Add "Restrict Unauthenticated RPC
clients" = Enabled:Authenticated on Member
Servers *only*
Ticket #411
09-30-2015
2.0.0
(L2) Add Disable IPv6 (via
DisabledComponents registry value = 0xff
(255))
Ticket #412
09-30-2015
2.0.0
(L2) Add "Prohibit connection to non-domain
networks when connected to domain
authenticated network" = Enabled
Ticket #413
09-30-2015
2.0.0
(L1) Add "Include command line in process
creation events" = Disabled
Ticket #414
09-30-2015
2.0.0
(L2) Add "Turn off handwriting
personalization data sharing" = Enabled
Ticket #415
09-30-2015
2.0.0
(L2) Add "Turn off handwriting recognition
error reporting" = Enabled
Ticket #416
09-30-2015
2.0.0
(L2) Add "Turn off Internet Connection
Wizard if URL connection is referring to
Microsoft.com" = Enabled
Ticket #417
720 | P a g e
Date
Version
Changes for this version
09-30-2015
2.0.0
(L2) Add "Turn off Internet File Association
service" = Enabled
Ticket #418
09-30-2015
2.0.0
(L2) Add "Turn off Registration if URL
connection is referring to Microsoft.com" =
Enabled
Ticket #419
09-30-2015
2.0.0
(L2) Add "Turn off the "Order Prints" picture
task" = Enabled
Ticket #420
09-30-2015
2.0.0
(L2) Add "Turn off Windows Customer
Experience Improvement Program" = Enabled
Ticket #421
09-30-2015
2.0.0
(L2) Add "Turn off Windows Error Reporting"
= Enabled
Ticket #422
09-30-2015
2.0.0
(L1->L2) Move "Turn off Internet download
for Web publishing and online ordering
wizards" to Level 2
Ticket #423
09-30-2015
2.0.0
(L1->L2) Move "Turn off Search Companion
content file updates" to Level 2
Ticket #424
09-30-2015
2.0.0
(L1->L2) Move "Turn off the Windows
Messenger Experience Improvement
Program" to Level 2
Ticket #425
721 | P a g e
Date
Version
Changes for this version
09-30-2015
2.0.0
(L1) Add "NT VIRTUAL MACHINE\Virtual
Machines" to "Create symbolic links" for
Hyper-V Role
Ticket #426
09-30-2015
2.0.0
(L1) Add
"System\CurrentControlSet\Services\CertSvc"
to "Network access: Remotely accessible
registry paths and sub-paths" for ADCS Role
Ticket #427
09-30-2015
2.0.0
(L1) Add "IIS_USRS" to "Impersonate a client
after authentication" for Web Server (IIS) Role
with Web Services Role Service
Ticket #428
09-30-2015
2.0.0
(L1) Add
"System\CurrentControlSet\Services\WINS"
to "Network access: Remotely accessible
registry paths and sub-paths" for WINS Server
Feature
Ticket #429
09-30-2015
2.0.0
(L1) Add "Hardened UNC Paths" to protect
NETLOGON and SYSVOL (MS15-011 /
KB3000483)
Ticket #432
09-30-2015
2.0.0
(L2) Add "Turn off Help Experience
Improvement Program" = Enabled
Ticket #433
09-30-2015
2.0.0
(L1) Add "Prevent users from sharing files
within their profile." = Enabled
Ticket #434
722 | P a g e
Date
Version
Changes for this version
09-30-2015
2.0.0
(L2) Add "Prevent Codec Download" =
Enabled
Ticket #435
09-30-2015
2.0.0
(L2) Add "Disallow copying of user input
methods to the system account for sign-in" =
Enabled
Ticket #436
10-30-2015
2.1.0
Add "MSS (Legacy)" section from new ADMX
template, relocate all MSS items to it and
delete old MSS section
Ticket #438
10-30-2015
2.1.0
Add "SCM: Wi-Fi Sense" section from new
Microsoft ADMX template
Ticket #439
10-30-2015
2.1.0
(L2) Remove "Turn off Internet File
Association service" recommendation - does
not apply
Ticket #440
10-30-2015
2.1.0
(L1) Remove "Do not adjust default option to
'Install Updates and Shut Down' in Shut Down
Windows dialog box" recommendation - does
not apply
Ticket #441
10-30-2015
2.1.0
(L1) Remove "Do not display 'Install Updates
and Shut Down' option in Shut Down Windows
dialog box" recommendation - does not apply
Ticket #442
723 | P a g e
Date
Version
Changes for this version
10-30-2015
2.1.0
(L1) Remove "Reschedule Automatic Updates
scheduled installations" recommendation does not apply
Ticket #443
10-30-2015
2.1.0
(L1) Add "Audit Application Group
Management" = Success and Failure
Ticket #444
10-30-2015
2.1.0
(L1) Add "MSS: (EnableICMPRedirect) Allow
ICMP redirects to override OSPF generated
routes" = Disabled
Ticket #445
10-30-2015
2.1.0
(L2->L1) Move "MSS:
(NoNameReleaseOnDemand) Allow the
computer to ignore NetBIOS name release
requests except from WINS servers" = Enabled
to Level 1
Ticket #446
10-30-2015
2.1.0
(L2->L1) Move "Disallow Autoplay for nonvolume devices" = Enabled to Level 1
Ticket #447
10-30-2015
2.1.0
(L2->L1) Move "Turn off heap termination on
corruption" = Disabled to Level 1
Ticket #448
10-30-2015
2.1.0
Fix missing/incorrect Common Configuration
Enumeration (CCE) IDs
Ticket #449
724 | P a g e
Date
Version
Changes for this version
10-30-2015
2.1.0
(L1) Add "Set the default behavior for
AutoRun" = "Enabled: Do not execute any
autorun commands"
Ticket #450
10-30-2015
2.1.0
(L1) Add LAPS "Enable local admin password
management" = "Enabled"
Ticket #451
10-30-2015
2.1.0
(L1) Add LAPS "Password Settings: Password
Complexity" = "Enabled:Large letters + small
letters + numbers + specials"
Ticket #452
10-30-2015
2.1.0
(L1) Add LAPS "Password Settings: Password
Length" = "Enabled:15 or more"
Ticket #453
10-30-2015
2.1.0
(L1) Add LAPS "Password Settings: Password
Age (Days)" = "Enabled:30 or fewer"
Ticket #454
10-30-2015
2.1.0
(L1) Add LAPS "Do not allow password
expiration time longer than required by
policy" = "Enabled"
Ticket #455
10-30-2015
2.1.0
(L1) Ensure LAPS AdmPwd GPO Extension /
CSE is installed
Ticket #456
10-30-2015
2.1.0
(L2) Add "Turn off KMS Client Online AVS
Validation" = "Enabled"
Ticket #457
725 | P a g e
Date
Version
Changes for this version
10-30-2015
2.1.0
(L1) Add "Turn on PowerShell Script Block
Logging" = "Disabled"
Ticket #458
10-30-2015
2.1.0
(L1) Add "Turn on PowerShell Transcription"
= "Disabled
Ticket #459
10-30-2015
2.1.0
Change from LGPE GPO paths to GPME GPO
paths
Ticket #460
10-30-2015
2.1.0
(L1) Remove "Enable RPC Endpoint Mapper
Client Authentication" recommendation from
DCs
Ticket #461
11-02-2015
2.1.0
Improved document formatting – no
recommendation changes.
04-28-2016
2.2.0
(L1) Change "Windows Firewall: Domain:
Settings: Display a notification" from "Yes" to
"No"
Ticket #482
04-28-2016
2.2.0
(L1) Change "Windows Firewall: Private:
Settings: Display a notification" from "Yes" to
"No"
Ticket #483
04-28-2016
2.2.0
(L1) Change "Windows Firewall: Public: Apply
local firewall rules" from "Yes (default)" to
"No"
Ticket #484
726 | P a g e
Date
Version
Changes for this version
04-28-2016
2.2.0
(L1) Change "Audit Security State Change"
from "Success and Failure" to "Success"
Ticket #485
04-28-2016
2.2.0
(L1) Add "Allow user control over installs" =
"Disabled"
Ticket #490
04-28-2016
2.2.0
Addition of SkyDrive category, separate from
OneDrive category
Ticket #499
04-28-2016
2.2.0
(L1) Add Store "Turn off Automatic Download
and Install of updates" = "Disabled"
Ticket #510
04-28-2016
2.2.0
(L1) Add Store "Turn off the offer to update to
the latest version of Windows" = "Enabled"
Ticket #512
04-28-2016
2.2.0
(L2) Add Store "Turn off the Store application"
= Enabled
Ticket #513
04-28-2016
2.2.0
(L1) Add Windows Error Reporting
"Automatically send memory dumps for OSgenerated error reports" = "Disabled"
Ticket #514
04-28-2016
2.2.0
(L1) Add Windows Error Reporting "Configure
Default consent" = "Enabled: Always ask
before sending data"
Ticket #515
727 | P a g e
Date
Version
Changes for this version
04-28-2016
2.2.0
(L1) Add "Minimize the number of
simultaneous connections to the Internet or a
Windows Domain" = "Enabled"
Ticket #525
04-28-2016
2.2.0
(L2) Add "Turn off access to the Store" =
"Enabled"
Ticket #527
04-28-2016
2.2.0
(L2) Add "Turn off location" = "Enabled"
Ticket #531
04-28-2016
2.2.0
(L1 -> L2) Move "Interactive logon: Number of
previous logons to cache (in case domain
controller is not available)" = "4 or fewer
logons" to Level 2
Ticket #535
04-28-2016
2.2.0
REMOVE - (L1) Set 'Recovery console: Allow
automatic administrative logon' to 'Disabled'
Ticket #536
04-28-2016
2.2.0
REMOVE - (L1) Set 'Recovery console: Allow
floppy copy and access to all drives and all
folders' to 'Disabled'
Ticket #537
04-28-2016
2.2.0
REMOVE - (L1) Set 'Windows Firewall:
Domain: Settings: Allow unicast response' to
'No'
Ticket #538
728 | P a g e
Date
Version
Changes for this version
04-28-2016
2.2.0
REMOVE - (L1) Set 'Windows Firewall:
Private: Settings: Allow unicast response' to
'No'
Ticket #539
04-28-2016
2.2.0
REMOVE - (L1) Set 'Windows Firewall: Public:
Settings: Allow unicast response' to 'No'
Ticket #540
04-28-2016
2.2.0
REMOVE - (L2) Set 'Require trusted path for
credential entry' to 'Enabled'
Ticket #541
04-28-2016
2.2.0
Update "(L1) Ensure EMET is installed" for
EMET 5.5
Ticket #542
04-28-2016
2.2.0
(L1) Add EMET "Default Action and Mitigation
Settings" = "Enabled" (plus subsettings)
Ticket #543
04-28-2016
2.2.0
Update "(L1) Set 'Default Protections for
Internet Explorer'" for EMET 5.5 registry
values
Ticket #544
04-28-2016
2.2.0
Update "(L1) Set 'Default Protections for
Popular Software'" for EMET 5.5 registry
values
Ticket #545
729 | P a g e
Date
Version
Changes for this version
04-28-2016
2.2.0
Update "(L1) Set 'Default Protections for
Recommended Software'" for EMET 5.5
registry values
Ticket #546
04-28-2016
2.2.0
Update "(L1) Set 'System ASLR'" for EMET 5.5
registry values
Ticket #547
04-28-2016
2.2.0
Update "(L1) Set 'System DEP'" for EMET 5.5
registry values
Ticket #548
04-28-2016
2.2.0
Update "(L1) Set 'System SEHOP'" for EMET
5.5 registry values
Ticket #549
04-28-2016
2.2.0
(L2) Add "Log on as a batch job" =
"Administrators" (DC only)
Ticket #555
04-28-2016
2.2.0
(L2) Add "Microsoft Support Diagnostic Tool:
Turn on MSDT interactive communication
with support provider" = "Disabled"
Ticket #557
04-28-2016
2.2.0
(L1) Add "Do not delete temp folders upon
exit" = "Disabled"
Ticket #561
04-28-2016
2.2.0
(L1) Add "Prevent downloading of enclosures"
= "Enabled"
Ticket #562
730 | P a g e
Date
Version
Changes for this version
04-28-2016
2.2.0
(L2) Add "Allow Remote Shell Access" =
"Disabled"
Ticket #563
731 | P a g e