ISPs have a duty to ensure traffic passing from their networks onto those of their customers must be "as clean as possible", said Kip McClanahan, CEO of TippingPoint, speaking at a debate at the NetEvents conference in Costa Brava, Spain.
"When you buy water from the water company you expect it to be as clean as possible. But when you buy bandwidth from a provider, is it clean?" McClanahan asked.
He urged businesses to press ISPs into action and make the connections more secure from attacks.
His view was echoed by Peter Glock, head of security products at Equant. Glock said data traffic in the network had to be clean "as soon as possible and a far back up the network as possible."
Glock said the most vulnerable point in the network is the internet router and steps must be taken to make this secure.