• The easy-to-use cybersecurity product closed a deal of USD 50 million in a funding round.
  • Apart from rendering security, it performs load balancing, optimizes the data traffic, and rerouting of network requests when issues emerge in a software update.

San Francisco-based startup ngrok Inc., the developer of a reverse proxy platform which is used by over 5 million developers, announced that it closed a USD 50 million funding round. Lightspeed Venture Partners and Coatue showed active participation in the Series A funding round.

In the enterprise, network requests sent from one server to another pass a system known as a reverse proxy before going to the ultimate destination. The role of reverse proxy is to check that network requests fulfill cybersecurity requirements and blocks malicious traffic. Another task of the system is to optimize cloud infrastructure usage.

Founded in 2015, ngrok sells a popular reverse proxy platform of the same name. The Unique Selling Point (USP) of the platform is that it is easier to use than any competing products in the category. The company claims that reverse proxy is deployed with just one line of code, it is that simple.

Companies can use ngrok to ensure that data traffic sent to their applications travels through encrypted connections. An additional measure to protect connections is end-to-end encryption. The method will ensure that ngrok reverse proxy implementation which is lined through company’s network requests travel can decrypt them.

Tasks handled by ngrok

  • It can perform processing of the login requests sent to a cloud service. Also, there is a single sign-on capabilities to streamline the login experiences for users. The single sign-on is a cybersecurity approach which helps employees access multiple work application with a single password.
  • Another important task is to perform load balancing. A part of feature set is that ngrok provides a load balancer which is easier to configure than competing alternatives.
  • It has the ability to optimize the data traffic sent to an application and lends itself to software testing.
  • Many development teams use an approach known as blue-green deployment to make sure that software doesn’t cause any kind of downtime. With this approach, developers create two copies of an application and release new code of one of the copies.
  • The new platform, as ngrok claims, can automatically reroute network requests when any issue emerge in the software update. It also makes it easier to address hardware outages.

It has employed more than 5 million developers since the launch. The startup also has 30,000 paying customers, including Databricks Inc., Zendesk Inc and other major tech firms. The startup’s revenue also got doubled in one year and all of it was due to strong customer demand of the product. With the new funding, ngrok will hire more workers to improve product development and go-to-market initiatives.

Experts’ Talk

“Traditional networking requires infrastructure teams to operate legacy proxies, load balancers or VPNs, which is a slow, manual process,” said ngrok founder and Chief Executive Officer Alan Shreve. “As developers face substantial pressure to deliver applications faster, they need more self-service and automation.”

Shreve said, “When developers build applications and APIs, they need to deliver them to customers on the internet. Ingress is the service that provides application delivery and makes your service available securely to its customers. Ngrok’s ingress is [an] application’s front door. The way developers build applications has fundamentally changed. Microservice architectures, serverless platforms and other shifts in the industry have led to a proliferation of new APIs and apps which need their own ingress in different environments.”