Spammers have unfortunately devised a new way to invade phones: calendar invitations.Â
A rash of calendar spam has invaded iPhones in recent weeks as many people are getting a wave of calendar invitations from Chinese email addresses, which are sending annoying notifications.
Apple has yet to provide an official fix, but here’s everything you need to know (and a few workarounds) in the meantime.
First off, here’s what the invitations look like. They may be for Ugg boots or RayBans or something else but they all seem to originate from Chinese email accounts and all seem to be selling something.Â
Don’t decline the invitations
Before you do anything, make sure you don’t decline the invitations as this alerts the sender that your email is linked to an active account, which increases the possibility of â you guessed it â more spam.
If you have already declined some, or all, of the invitations, though, don’t despair â there are still ways to get the pesky invites to go away.Â
Change your calendar settings
If your chief complaint is the push notifications blowing up your phone, your best bet may be to change your calendar settings so that incoming invitations are routed to your email rather than your device.
To do this, you’ll need to log into your iCloud account from a browser. From there, select Calendar and click into the settings menu (the gear icon at the lower left corner of the calendar.)Â
There, under the “advanced” tab, you’ll find Â a setting to receive invitations as emails. Check this box.Â
This should help in two ways. First, it will make the invitations easier to ignore and delete because they will appear as emails, rather than push notifications. Second, if your email provider has built-in spam detection tools, the spam filters may automatically recognize them as such and move them to spam for you. Alternatively, you could use the spam-reporting feature to report the emailed invitations.
Set up a “junk” calendar
If you opting out of all calendar notifications on your device isn’t an option for you, there is another way you can make the unwanted invites disappear.Â
First, you’ll need to create a new calendar. Open the app and tap “Calendars” at the bottom of the app. The tap Edit â> Add Calendar. Give it a name, like “junk.”
Then go to your invitations (under “Inbox”), tap on one you want to delete and scroll down to the “calendar” menu. Here, you should see your default calendar, tap into that menu and select instead the one you just created.
Repeat this process for each unwanted invitation and then using the same edit menu you used to create the calendar, tap “delete.”Â
Keep in mind this won’t prevent future invitations, so if you receive more spam after you delete the calendar, you’ll have to repeat the process.
While none of these solutions are perfect, they should provide a short-term fix until Apple comes up with a more permanent solution.