Once again, spammers have found a new platform to push phishing and scam links to the users. We have recently published an article on Google Calendar’s spam issue and how to stop spammers from adding spam events on Google Calendar. Now spammers have started targeting Apple iCloud calendars with junk invites.
Apple does a good job of filtering out the spam that users won’t even notice. Yet, these new spam messages get through spam filters because macOS and iOS add notifications for event invitations even if messages are filtered to the junk folder. Apple encountered the same problem a couple of years ago, but it is on the rise again just like Google Calendar.
Calendar invitation spam
Spammers spam iCloud Calendar invitations in different ways. The first one is through junk emails. When you get junk mail, it may include an event invitation and you will have three options to select from: Accept, Decline or Maybe. But none of them really matters as it sends a notification back to the spammer anyways. In this way, the spammer gets your personal email address and starts sending you more spam calendar invites.
The second type of spam event is even more irritating. The spam invitations are sent by an individual instead of receiving it over email. The spam events are automatically added to your iCloud Calendar without any permission.
To prevent spammers from adding spam events to iCloud Calendar, we have compiled a step-by-step guide for you. Just follow the steps mentioned below:
How to prevent spammers from adding spam events to Calendar
- Prevent spam invites sent through junk mail
- Prevent spam invites sent by an individual
Prevent spam invites sent through junk mail
If you are receiving spam calendar invitations via junk mail, Apple gives you options to prevent this. Here’s how to do it:
- Open the junk mail.
- Find the underlined option that says ‘Report Junk’ right under those fake “Accept, Decline, Maybe” buttons (Apple Mail doesn’t display the button images as it detects fake options).
- Click on ‘Report Junk’. This will delete the email and prevent spammers from sending spam emails in the future.
Prevent spam invites sent by an individual
If the spammer has tricked you to click on those fake buttons which we have previously stated, you will receive spam events and they get auto-added to your iCloud Calendar.
To prevent and delete those pesky spam events showing up on your Apple iOS Calendar app, follow these steps:
- Launch the Calendar app.
- Tap on Add Calendar.
- Tap on Name text field and type ‘Spam’.
- Finally, tap on Done.
To do the same on your Apple macOS/iCloud Calendar, follow these steps:
- Open Calendar.
- Click on Choose File/New Calendar.
- On the left sidebar, click on the new entry and rename it to ‘Spam’.
For both instances, you now have a new calendar which you can choose to see alongside your default one. Click on a spam event and assign it to your Spam calendar. Do the same to the other spam events. Now you can either untick Spam from the sidebar to hide those annoying spam events or just delete the Spam calendar altogether. Deleting the calendar will also delete all of the spam events in it.
On iOS, here’s how to delete the calendar:
- Launch the Calendar app.
- Tap on the (i) icon next to your Spam calendar.
- Scroll down to the bottom and find the option labeled ‘Delete Calendar’.
- Tap on Delete Calendar.
On macOS/iCloud, here’s how to delete the calendar:
- Open Calendar.
- Right-click on the Spam Calendar.
- A confirmation dialog box will appear. Click on Delete.
How to stop events from being auto-added to your iCloud Calendar
Unlike Google Calendar, there are no specific options in the iOS or macOS Calendar app to stop spam events from getting automatically added to your Calendar. Though Apple added some settings on iCloud.com to prevent this from happening again. Follow these steps mentioned below:
- First, Log-in to iCloud.com. Also, make sure you have set up iCloud on your iOS or Mac devices properly. Otherwise, you won’t see Calendar on iCloud.
- Now, click on Calendar.
- Click on the cogwheel icon, located on the bottom-left corner.
- Select Preferences from the menu.
- Click on the Advanced tab.
- At last, find the option labeled ‘Receive event invitations as’ and click on the circle next to ‘Email to [email protected]’.
This will restrict spammers from auto-adding spam events on your iCloud Calendar. We hope to see an option like this on iOS or macOS in the near future. For now, the best option for you is to follow the steps as recommended in this article.
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