Calendar Event Spam

Recently I’ve begun receiving a new, more invasive type of spam in the form of calendar invites. See the screenshot:

The spam items are infuriating: daily repeating events that appear on my calendar automatically, with names like “GET YOUR FREE GIFT”. The calendar app I use (Fantastical) doesn’t seem to provide a Delete function for invites, only Decline, which implies that I actually send a response to these spam senders whenever I get rid of them. (This makes me shudder for some reason).

Does anyone have any experience with this class of spam? Is there any way to block these kinds of messages? I fear it’ll increase until my calendar and invite lists are regularly filled up…

I should note that I don’t see these items in my email apps at all, only calendar.

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I assume you use Fantastical to connect to iCal events, yes? Open Calendar in, click on the spammy event, and click Report Junk. Then click OK to remove the event from all your iCloud-synced devices.

You can also prevent push notifications entirely.

There are alternate ways to deal with Google Calendar spam. In general you’ll find good information by simply googling calendar invite spam

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I have followed the instructions found via basic Googling weeks ago, thanks. (I should have mentioned that.) Not to worry, I can search too. :wink:

Unfortunately those solutions aren’t very thorough. The main approach on Gmail is telling Google Calendar not to add events from my email to my calendar automatically. Unfortunately that setting doesn’t seem to stick, or Fantastical adds it anyway, or something.

I’m hoping someone else in the MPU universe has successfully dealt with these without having to manually fight with each item.

You really should have mentioned which calendar system you were using, Ryan!

The answer is pretty simple: turn off calendar invites. (That’s easy to google. :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye: )

You’re right, sorry. Aye, all Google Calendar at the moment.

I swear I’ve turned off invites. I’ll triple check nonetheless. That said, it sucks that the main way we can avoid these requires disabling a useful email-calendar integration…

Sure. I live inside GC and the first thing I did, years ago, was turn off invites. And I’ve never received a single piece of spam in my calendar. On the other hand, I probably would chafe if I tended to be offered invites I wanted to add. (When it [rarely] happens that I get an invite I just add it manually and don’t think twice about it.)


To chronicle my event spam adventures for others…
Within Google Calendar:

  • the General tab setting “Automatically add invitations” is set to “No”,
  • “Show declined events” is deselected, and
  • the “Automatically add events from Gmail to my calendar” setting under the “Events from Gmail” header is deselected.

I’ve also deleted the current spam event from my calendar in Google Calendar.

In Fantastical’s settings:

  • Under Appearance, “Show declined events” is deselected. I can’t find any other settings that seem relevant.

After making the Google Calendar changes above, the event still showed. I deleted it there. Then the spam event continued to show in Fantastical on macOS. I eventually deleted it in Calendar on macOS, which I’m sure sent off a message to the spam-sender. Then when I checked Fantastical on iOS it was still there, though strikethrough indicates I had declined it. I deleted it there manually and it seems to be gone.

I’m starting to think that this is badly handled on Fantastical’s part. I’ll report back if I learn more!

Was the spam event inside Google Calendar? Or is it possible Fantastical is also pulling invitations from something else, maybe from iCal?

It was all Google Calendar. Fantastical persisted even when the event no longer showed on Google Calendar. I appreciate the app’s determination, I suppose.

Follow up:
Google says a fix for that obnoxious Calendar spam issue is on the way

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FYI there’s a good piece the other day by Brian Krebs on locking down Apple’s and Google’s calendars to prevent spam.

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