The government is poised to limit public access to death records that identity thieves have used for years to commit tax fraud.
A provision in the budget measure cleared by the Senate Wednesday would limit access to information in the Social Security Administration’s Death Master File to certified entities, such as life insurers and pension funds that use the data to combat fraud and administer benefits. The limits would apply for three years after an individual’s death.
‘‘We’re going to save the US government money that otherwise is being stolen,’’ said Senator Bill Nelson.
The changes would save the government an estimated $786 million over the next decade.
Nelson and other lawmakers have been trying for several years to limit access to the death records. Full story for BostonGlobe.com subscribers.