iPhone calendar spam is a type of unwanted or unsolicited spam messages that appear as events or invitations in the built-in Calendar app on iPhones, iPads, and Macs. These spam messages are created by scammers and spammers who use automated tools to send fraudulent invitations and event notifications to users’ calendars.
The messages often include links to phishing websites or other malicious content, and they are designed to trick users into clicking on the links or providing their personal information. Users can receive these spam messages even if they haven’t subscribed to any services or signed up for any events.
To prevent iPhone calendar spam, users can turn off the automatic calendar invitations feature, which prevents unsolicited calendar events from appearing on their calendar. Additionally, users can report the spam messages to Apple, which can take action to block the sources of the spam. It’s also important to be cautious about clicking on any links in suspicious messages and to only provide personal information to trusted sources. Regenerate response
How you get it
The most common techniques for spreading calendar spam are bogus adverts, popups, and other forms of coding used on websites which may be of a questionable nature. They can be found on pornography sites, but also file sharing sites, unofficial streaming platforms, gaming sites, random blogs, pretty much anywhere at all.
Calendar applications like iCal make it easy to add public calendars, which are just URLs, and the scammers exploit that ease of use. The aim of the scammers’ game is to get unsuspecting users to accept a calendar subscription. Often, they will obscure the subscription with a distraction. For example, a user may be asked to confirm that they’re a human via CAPTCHA. The user clicks through, and before they realise it, they’ve also clicked “OK” to a follow-up message containing a calendar subscription.
Should you accept one of these subscriptions, the spam calendar and all related events will be added to your calendar app. The events in the calendar contain alerts, which generate notifications, which could leave your screen looking a little something like this. Should you venture into your calendar, a tangled mess of calendar entries awaits.
The links in the calendar entries lead to the usual range of spam, surveys, bogus apps, fake security tools, and more besides. They have nothing you want or need to be wasting your time on. With this in mind, what can you do about it? Also read : How to set iPhone background sleep timer?
Here are the steps to remove iPhone calendar spam:
- Decline the event: If you receive a spam event invitation in your calendar, the first step is to decline the invitation. This will remove the event from your calendar.
- Report the event as spam: To report the event as spam, open the Calendar app, find the event, and tap on it. Then tap on the “Report Junk” option, which will notify Apple about the spam event.
- Turn off the automatic invitations feature: To prevent unsolicited calendar events from appearing on your calendar, you can turn off the automatic invitations feature. To do this, go to Settings > Calendar > and turn off the “Events Found in Mail” and “Events Found in Apps” options.
- Block the sender: If you know the sender of the spam event, you can block them to prevent future events from appearing in your calendar. To block a sender, open the Calendar app, find the event, and tap on the sender’s name. Then tap on the “Block this Person” option.
By taking these steps, you can remove iPhone calendar spam and prevent future spam events from appearing in your calendar. It’s also important to be cautious about clicking on any links in suspicious messages and to only provide personal information to trusted sources.
Not just iPhone
Spammers will try and abuse all sorts of devices, apps, and systems in order to besiege you with calendar spam (or even calendar-style spam) notification alerts. In 2019, Google Calendar users were hit with a wave of spam notifications, and Calendly users were impacted by phishers abusing the service in 2022. In that same year, new safety features appeared for Google Docs users in order to give users a little more confidence that notifications were not bogus.
No matter the device or service, anything with notification ability could be a target. In many ways, phone calendar spam is a perfect fit for phones where everyday misclicks are very common. It only takes one spam calendar prompt hidden behind something else and a split second lapse in attention for the scammers to stake a claim on your phone.
The good news is that once you understand how the scam works, it’s very easy to remove the notifications and keep your phone free from endless spam notifications.
Keeping your calendars spam free
Here are some tips for keeping your calendars spam-free:
- Be cautious when accepting calendar invitations: If you receive a calendar invitation from someone you don’t know or an event you didn’t sign up for, be cautious. Don’t accept the invitation unless you can verify its legitimacy.
- Use a reputable email filter: Many calendar spam messages are sent via email, so it’s important to use a reputable email filter that can identify and block spam messages before they reach your inbox.
- Turn off automatic invitations: To prevent unsolicited calendar events from appearing on your calendar, turn off the automatic invitations feature in your calendar settings. This will require you to manually accept or decline each event invitation.
- Report spam events: If you receive a spam event in your calendar, report it to the calendar service provider, such as Apple or Google. This will help the provider identify and block the sources of calendar spam.
- Avoid clicking on suspicious links: Calendar spam messages often include links to phishing websites or other malicious content. Don’t click on any links in suspicious messages, and only provide personal information to trusted sources.
- Use a trusted calendar app: Make sure you’re using a trusted calendar app that has robust security features and is regularly updated to protect against new forms of spam and other security threats.
By following these tips, you can help keep your calendars spam-free and protect your personal information from scammers and spammers.