Skype has been adding new features to make calls better. It’s added subtitles for calls, and it now lets you blur the background in a video call. It doesn’t appear to be abandoning its ‘social’ side though which is why you’ll get people suggestions in Skype. These suggestions appear in the Recent Chats column. You can hide them temporarily but they will be back unless you permanently disable them. Here’s how.
Disable people suggestions in Skype
To permanently disable people suggestions in Skype, open the app and at the top-right of the left column click the more options button. From the menu that opens, select Settings.
On the Settings window, go to the Contacts tab. On the Contacts tab, select Privacy. On the Privacy screen, turn off the ‘Receive Suggestions’ switch and you will no longer see people suggestions in Skype.
You might also want to turn off the ‘Appear in suggestions’ switch. Doing so will stop you from appearing as a suggested person to add to others.
The suggestions come from people in your contacts. Skype isn’t suggesting random people and you will almost always recognize the names that the app suggests. Skype allows users to be added via their Skype name and their email address. Chances are you have someone’s email saved with their other contact information and Skype is using it to show you people you can chat with.
This isn’t exactly a privacy violation. We know that the People app and Skype both have access to our contacts on Windows 10. Skype isn’t accessing information that it has been blocked from seeing. The actual concerning bit is where it also suggests to other people to add you. Again, these people already have your email, at the very least, in their contacts which is why Skype can suggest you in the first place but you may not want to talk to every single person over Skype which is why this is a scary feature. Thankfully, you can disable it if you know it’s enabled and Skype happens to have this ‘feature’ enabled by default.
While you’re at it, you can also stop people from looking you up on Skype. The option to do so is on the same Privacy screen under contacts. With this option disabled, you have far more control over who can, and cannot, message you over Skype. The features are concerning but it’s a relief nonetheless that there’s an off switch for all of them.