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Cybersecurity remains a paramount concern in Malaysian financial markets, with the ever-evolving threat landscape necessitating vigilant measures to safeguard sensitive data and infrastructure. Among many technologies, digital identity has been identified as an essential technology to improve cybersecurity issues and thus is increasingly gaining both practitioners’ and researchers’ attention. The study investigates the adoption of digital identity among tech-savvy financial market participants and its relationship with the fear appeal theory, particularly emphasizing the moderating role of fear of cyberattacks. We have used a questionnaire survey method to collect data from 361 tech-savvy financial market participants. The data analysis shows that the response efficacy, self-efficacy, transparency, and fear of cyberattacks positively influence digital identity adoption. The study further tested the moderating effect of fear of cyberattacks. Our results show that fear of cyberattacks strongly moderates the link between perceived vulnerability and adoption, as well as self-efficacy and adoption. The study provides insights into the application of intelligent systems in the financial sector, offering practical guidance for enhancing digital identity adoption and advocating for measures to bolster cybersecurity practices among financial market participants.