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Adaptive Document Builder

A framework for generating simulated malicious office documents.


  • VBA is distinct for every document (level of distinction depends on the adversary document builder selected)
  • Random author based on easily updated/replaced name lists (sets local system registry keys before each document build)
  • Random file name based on the most commonly seen file names in malicious document campaigns
  • Multiple file formats (doc, docm, XML flat OPC)
  • Multiple file extensions (.doc, .docm, .rtf)
  • Supports multiple payloads
  • Functions for building and randomizing VBA are in a shared library for use across multiple adversary builders
  • Modular design and architecture for easy addition of more adversary builders
  • debug mode that outputs audit trail of document creation details including VBA contents

Runs on

Python 3 on Windows
COM is used to interface with an installed and configured Office product


Run this on a virtual machine!

  • Disable Windows Defender or add an exclusion for the adb files (before cloning) and your output directory or they might get cleaned
  • Registry entries will be changed when setting the author of documents, so don't run this with any production Office software


List available adversary emulation builders

>python -l

Build documents

Build 5 documents with vba and payload style resembling underscore_crew_201806 (group that delivered agent tesla during this time period)

  • Extension: .doc
  • File Format: XML flat OPC
>python -a underscore_crew_201806 -c 5 -o C:\users\h\desktop\out -f flatxml -e doc
[*] Building document Sales_Invoice_6619.doc with author: Valentia A Petersen
[*] Building document Your_Invoices_5801.doc with author: Nydia Shields
[*] Building document Selected_Ticket_9047.doc with author: Felipa Henson
[*] Building document Past_Due_Receipt_4278.doc with author: Minh J Mosley
[*] Building document Final_Bill_7431.doc with author: Kaile Perkins

Modify documents

VBA stomp (overwrite the compressed VBA storage) a macro enabled document (specified by -v). For more information about VBA Stomping see

>python -a emotet_20190222 -o C:\users\h\desktop\out -v

VBA stomp a single document (regardless of how it was created)

>python internals\ C:\users\h\desktop\out\Incorrect_Payment_7457.doc
[*] Stomped VBA - new file at: C:\users\h\desktop\out\Incorrect_Payment_7457.doc.stomped

Note: VBA stomping works for Word (.doc and .docm) and Excel (.xlsm) files. Currently, Excel .xls (Office 97-2003 format) is not supported.

Help Output

usage: program_name [-h] [-a ADVERSARY] [-f FILETYPE] [-e EXTENSION]
                    [-c COUNT] [-l] [-o OUTDIR] [-d]

program description

optional arguments:
  -h, --help            show this help message and exit
  -a ADVERSARY, --adversary ADVERSARY
                        -a --adversary {adversary name} (use -l to list)
  -f FILETYPE, --filetype FILETYPE
                        -f --filetype doc | docm | flatxml
  -e EXTENSION, --extension EXTENSION
                        -e --extension doc | docm | rtf
  -c COUNT, --count COUNT
                        -c --count {# of docs to create}
  -l, --listadversaries
                        -l --listadversaries : list available adversaries and
  -o OUTDIR, --outdir OUTDIR
                        -o --outdir {path\to\outdir}
  -d, --debug           -d --debug : print debug statements and playbook for
                        each document
  -v VBASTOMP, --vbastomp VBASTOMP
                        -v --vba-stomp : VBA stomp each document as they are built


Adaptive Document Builder




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