A wave of iCloud spam is taking over the Apple Calendar app. The unwanted advertising is placed directly in your calendar. Among other things, the offer deals with reduced sunglasses by Ray Ban and Oakley.
We will show you how to defend against it.
iCloud Spam in the form of fake Ray Ban and Oakley advertising
You can not delete the unwanted entries in your calendar. You have to react with “Accept”, “Decline” or “Perhaps”. And so the spammers have already achieved their goal. Now they know that you use your account, and that the selected email address is genuine. Other advertising will now inevitably follow. The important thing now, is to not react with any of the three possibilities. Do not press “Accept”, “Decline”, or “Maybe”. The fact that the goods offered are not real but only cheap imitations of expensive sunglasses is self-explanatory. Unwanted iCloud spam can be quite annoying.
How does iCloud Spam work?
But how does iCloud spam work exactly? The spammers, i.e those who send out this rubbish, are increasingly focusing on the services of iCloud, in order to place advertising directly on your iPhone and iPad. The sender sends the advertisement as an invitation to any random e-mail addresses. If these randomly chosen addresses are linked to an iCloud account, the user receives the message. This undesired advertisement is sent as a push message. Unfortunately, there is no way to delete the spam without confirmation.
Unwanted advertising – what now?
But there are little tricks on how to react to the spammers unwanted advertisements. You can deal with the annoying advertising without the senders seeing you doing it. Either you create a spam calendar, you can delete it or you can forward invitations to your e-mail address and then delete them from there .
If you want to create a spam calendar, do the following:
- Go to Calendar in the Calendar app.
- Select “Edit” in the next window.
- At the end of the list, choose “Add” and create a new calendar. The name can be selected individually.
- Then tap “Done”.
- Open the Spam invitation in the calendar input and select the newly created spam calendar below the text. This will move the invitation to the new calendar. You can now do this with every spam message.
- Then you delete the entire calendar. Here’s how: Select the calendar list using the “Calendar” option and press the “i” icon. In the following menu you can delete the calendar and – hey presto – the unwanted invitations have disappeared – and the sender does not receive any feedback.
The second option is to send invitations to your e-mail address, it works like this:
- You open iCloud.com in the browser on your computer.
- Log in with your Apple ID and your password for the service.
- Open the “Calendar app”, click the gear for the settings and select “Advanced”.
- Set a check against “Send via email to ___” and save the setting by clicking on “Save”.
- All invitations are sent to the registered email address, where they can be deleted directly. This is done without alerting the sender that they have hit on a valid address.
Photo sharing and reminders affected by iCloud spam
The spam messages not only affect the calendar app, but also iCloud photo releases and reminders are affected. Unfortunately there are hardly any opportunities to protect yourself against it without limiting yourself. For example, you can completely disable the “Reminders” service. Disadvantage: Reminder lists cannot be shared or synchronised.
Similarly, the “photo release” can be turned off, but again, there are limitations when using the sharing feature. The spam will still appear in the photo app if you select “Note from contacts” in the iOS settings for “Messages” / “Photos” instead of “Note all”.
Apple and the iCloud spam
It is unclear whether Apple has already accepted the iCloud spam problem. The sender’s address used by the spammer should be reported to firstname.lastname@example.org. This is Apple iCloud’s address for the team that fights spam.
It is important that your Apple two-factor authentication is enabled. This will protect your account if fraudsters should succeed in getting your password.