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The WannaCry ransomware that attacked computers in 150 countries has lines of code that are identical to work by hackers known as the Lazarus Group, according to security experts. The Lazarus hackers have been linked to North Korea, raising suspicions that the nation could be responsible for the attack.


In the past week, the president of the United States shared highly classified information with the Russians after he fired the director of the FBI. That whole affair was still roiling as we taped this show. Before that, Congress pulled a major piece of legislation affecting almost 20 percent of the American economy off the House floor before a vote, then passed it by the thinnest of margins. In different times, all this chaos would have spooked traders, shaken up markets and maybe Washington in the process. So it's worth hitting pause and asking: What did the markets know?

Another day and another conflict with airline employees goes viral.

JaizAnuar, fotolia

Computers worldwide have been hit by Ransomware. It’s also known as WannaCry and WannaCrypt. It’s a cyberattack that freezes electronic files until the owner pays ransom. The U.S. has not been hit as hard as some other countries, but businesses and government agencies and individuals – including in Wisconsin - should take precautions. WUWM spoke with David Schroeder, an IT expert at UW-Madison.

News is that construction on new houses and apartment complexes took a dip in April. Why aren't young people buying homes like they used to? Hint: It's not because of avocado toast purchases. We'll look at the structural changes that are happening within our economy. Afterwards, we'll explore how Target is trying to pull itself out of a slump, which includes abandoning some of its futuristic innovations, and talk about a new bipartisan bill in Congress that aims to help people who cycle in and out of the hospital. 

Cops have a decent shot at catching run-of-the-mill online scammers — say, the guy selling a car that's just too good to be true on Craigslist. But catching ransomware attackers is generally much more difficult — unless they slip up.

Updated at 10:20 a.m. ET

Donald Trump hadn't yet taken his oath as president when, last Dec. 21, he named Carl Icahn as "special adviser to the president on regulatory reform." He said Icahn would help him deal with "the strangling regulations that our country is faced with."

It’s back to basics for Target stores

May 16, 2017

Target reports its earnings Wednesday. After months of slumping sales and profits, the retailer is getting back to retailing basics: Renovating stores and pricing grocery items more competitively. That strategy means the Minneapolis-based retailer is abandoning some of the more futuristic innovations it was experimenting with.

Click the audio player above to hear the full story.

Aaron Schrank

Have you ever noticed that when you go on Amazon, sometimes you get charged sales tax and sometimes you don’t? That’s because different rules apply for different states, and there’s a lot of grey area. But now, under pressure from state governments, the company has agreed to collect them uniformly across the country. With that out of the way, revenue-hungry states are shifting their attention and trying to force the rest of online retail to pay up. 

Counting television viewers outside their homes

May 16, 2017
Adrienne Hill

It's that "upfronts" time of year, when TV broadcasters make their pitch to advertisers.

ESPN takes the stage in New York on Tuesday morning. And after years of trying to figure out how to count it, the sports channel will be pitching the size of its out-of-home-audience, all those folks watching in bars, at restaurants, at airports, and in the doctor's office.

Republicans and Democrats don’t quite see eye to eye when it comes to repealing Obamacare. But when the Senate Finance Committee meets today, there’s likely to be common ground on how to improve care for the 3.5 million sickest and most expensive Medicare patients: a new bipartisan bill that targets new treatments for the people who cycle in and out of the hospital.

Click the audio player above to hear the full story.


By now, you've likely heard about the malicious ransomware that spread like wildfire across computer networks using Microsoft's products. Matthew Green, a professor at Johns Hopkins University, joins us to talk about how users can keep safe and the primary motive behind the hacker(s) actions. Plus: Imraan Ismail, co-creator of the new virtual reality film "The Protectors," on why the medium hasn't become all that common yet. 

05/16/2017: The high price of the future

May 16, 2017

Ford could lay off about 10 percent of its workforce worldwide, most of whom may be salaried workers. On today's show, we'll discuss one of the issues the company is grappling with: its investment in the future, a move that comes at the expense of high costs in the present. Afterwards, we'll look at a new Trump administration policy that will deny funding to foreign nongovernmental organizations that promote abortion, and then explore how ESPN will try to use its out-of-home audience numbers to court advertisers. 

Investigators looking into the Trump campaign's ties to Russia will be able to pursue leads by tapping into a huge database of suspicious financial transactions maintained by the federal government.

Under the Bank Secrecy Act, financial institutions operating in the U.S. are supposed to inform the Treasury Department's Financial Crimes Enforcement Network, or FinCEN, when they see transactions that indicate possible money laundering, such as all-cash purchases of expensive real estate.

President Trump has proposed big tax cuts for businesses and individuals — breaks that could reduce federal revenue by trillions of dollars. Economists and tax specialists say that unless they're paid for, the tax cuts could explode budget deficits and the national debt.

The prospect has prominent Republicans and Republican members of Congress worried.