Over the past few weeks—and particularly over the retail adventure widely referred to as “Black Friday”—many Apple device owners experienced a new form of unsolicited and unwanted messages: a swarm of calendar alerts for online “deals” from spammers. The messages took advantage of the default settings in Apple’s iCloud calendar service, allowing senders to automatically push calendar alerts to Apple iOS and macOS users and bypass e-mail entirely.
Getting rid of these calendar “invites” is a problem in itself, as declining them sends a message back to the spammer—confirming that someone actually is monitoring the iCloud account they targeted and encouraging them to send more messages. Getting rid of the unwanted alerts requires a multi-step workaround. But blocking them entirely only requires a single change to iCloud settings.
To get rid of the invites without sending a response to the spammer, you’ll need to do the following:
The spam invites will now be gone without sending a response back to the spammer.
Blocking future calendar spam is less involved but requires a visit to your iCloud account via a Web browser. Log in to iCloud and go to the Calendar Web app, click on the Settings gear icon in the bottom left corner of the Calendar view, and click Preferences.
Click the “Advanced” button in the Preferences pop-up window. At the bottom of the window, change the Invitations setting for “Receive event invitations as:” from “In-app notifications” to “Email to [your iCloud account address].”
This will turn off the automatic integration of iCloud Calendar with your Calendar app and allow your spam filters to block unwanted invitations.