Charities to check deaths register

Charities will soon be able to apply to be allowed to cross-reference their supporter databases with the register of deaths to reduce the risk of sending letters to deceased donors and help prevent identity fraud.

The Registrars General for England and Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland will this month launch the application process. The move comes after provisions in the Supply of Information (Register of Deaths) Regulations 2007, which allow greater access to the register.

The Direct Marketing Association welcomed the move, saying it would reduce the chance of mail being intercepted and used to set up fake identities.

"The direct marketing industry needs to be responsible, and measures such as this go some way to achieving that," said a spokeswoman for the DMA.

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