Everybody seems to be convening cyber summits. Governments from New York to California, organizations from InfraGard to SANS to EDUCAUSE, more and more states and even private businesses are holding various types of cyber security summits. Why? Do they work? Should you add it to your 2008 (or perhaps 2009) agenda? We did in Michigan. Here\u2019s why. \u00a0First, some history. Growing up in Baltimore, I remember several very important presidential meetings regularly being held at Camp David (north of Frederick, Maryland, for those who aren\u2019t from the East Coast.) \u00a0Although our President would entertain various foreign dignitaries from somewhere a few times a month, occasionally, there would be a really important meeting called a summit. You know, like\u00a0Reagan meeting with Gorbachev in\u00a0Reykjavik, Iceland. \u00a0Bottom line, the word \u201csummit\u201d was reserved for that rare, one-off, spectacular, moment in time in which the whole world watched.\u00a0\u00a0 \u00a0Not anymore. If you Google \u201cgovernment summit\u201d\u00a0 now, you\u2019ll get over\u00a05 million results. Not to be outdone, our industry has joined the party, a Google search of \u201ccyber security summit\u201d recently yielded 168,000 results. In government and even in the wider IT industry, there now seems to be about a\u00a0summit a week. Education Summits, Health Technology Summits, even Data Warehouse Summits. Of course, there is the annual Gartner IT Security Summit that is always good, but now we are even seeing state-specific or city-specific cyber summits.For examples of what I\u2019m talking about, you can visit the Cyber Safe California Summit 2008. (which is this week) or the website for the Rochester Security Summit\u00a0 that was held last year. My reaction to this "new summit normal" had (until recently) been to laugh at the trend. (Please understand, I wasn\u2019t mocking the events, only the name summit.)\u00a0 These were excellent conferences, but I wondered: why call them summits?\u00a0 There are so many cyber security conferences, IT conferences and vendor-specific conferences and events that I believed another state-specific summit didn\u2019t seem to make sense. Well I\u2019ve changed my mind. Yes, a few friends and colleagues have persuaded me to join the summit parade. Why?\u00a0\u00a0\u00a0 \u00a0For one, our Michigan Cyber Security Summit in June will be in Lansing \u2013 where our Michigan Government is. We will be able to bring together all parts of our State\u2019s public sector, including K-12 education, community colleges, universities, local and state government, even some federal government leaders. \u00a0Second, we will be able to offer a low cost local event for a wider state audience that generally doesn\u2019t care much about cyber security conferences. This summit will be for government managers and agency leaders to focus for a day on cyber security.Third, and most important, we can shine the media and PR light on the important cyber security business issues we face. It provides training and cultural change for an essential topic in ways that security conferences in San Francisco or even Detroit generally provide to security professionals. \u00a0Don\u2019t get me wrong, RSA and SecureWorld events are important and helpful. They are just for a different audience. So Michigan will join the list of states that will hold a Cyber Security Summit this year. Perhaps your state, or city, or government agency, or business should hold one as well.\u00a0\u00a0\u00a0\u00a0\u00a0\u00a0\u00a0 If you're bothered by the name - call\u00a0yours whatever you want.