Web Server Load Balancing with NGINX Plus


Achieving Deployment Agility and High Performance for Internet Banking and Mobile Applications
Amsterdam, Netherlands
Use Cases

ING Bank is a Dutch multinational banking and financial services corporation headquartered in Amsterdam.


A reverse proxy that could be be rapidly deployed, updated, and patched.


Achieved Better Performance by Completely Replacing Aging IBM WebSeal Reverse Proxy

Icon of Agile Running Man

Meet Needs of Fast-Moving Customers and Agile Internal Processes

Deploy Changes with No Downtime


ING Bank is a global financial institution with a strong European base, offering bank services. Their customer base includes individuals, families, small businesses, large corporations, institutions, and governments.


As a global banking institution with thousands of employees and millions of customers worldwide, ING Bank must offer secure mobile and Web applications at scale and at high speed. For the IT development and operations teams, security and reliability are top priorities, coupled with an overall goal of reducing complexity wherever possible.

Online banking customers were routed and authenticated through IBM WebSEAL as a reverse proxy, but this expensive system includes many complex components which, while not utilized in this scenario, were required for the platform to run. Additionally, configuring and managing WebSEAL was cumbersome and slow, yet yielded diminishing performance returns due to high overall platform overhead.

With fast-moving customers and an agile internal process, ING Bank also required a solution that could be rapidly deployed, updated, and patched. Minimizing downtime was key to serving customers around the globe, as ING increasingly offered branchless banking services to its customers.


NGINX can perform the functions of authentication and reverse proxy at high speeds, without deployment downtime, and without complex configuration regimes. The team at ING Bank very quickly built a proof of concept for replacing WebSEAL, and found immediate and dramatic performance improvements without any special customization or training required.

The proof of concept was quite a success because the performance was much better than WebSEAL. IBM WebSEAL consists of not only reverse proxies, but also a lot of other systems that are required. Using NGINX, we could get rid of all of those additional systems and applications and retain only the reverse proxy functionality within NGINX.
– John Stroet, IT Architect at ING Bank

ING Bank has since deployed NGINX to production, replacing WebSEAL. The easier method of configuration saved teams time and headache, and did not require education, or extensive retraining. Silman Kalai, Operations Engineer at ING Bank, also discovered that NGINX brought with it the added benefit of zero downtime deployments.

“I love NGINX because it’s very fast. It’s very easy to configure. It sounds a little bit cliche, but you press a button and everything happens. It’s like magic. You can deploy it without any downtime. It doesn’t matter what time you deploy it. It doesn’t matter how many connections you have at that point. There is no drawback to deploying it,” said Kalai.

About ING Bank

ING Bank has over 52,000 employees in 40 countries worldwide. The bank services over 37 million customers. ING Bank utilizes highly agile and advanced software processes, including continuous deployment, microservices, and DevOps. ING Bank created the concept of branchless banking with its ING Direct service, offering customers a more profitable, less costly online banking experience. The company is a subsidiary of the larger ING Group, which holds additional firms in insurance and other industries. ING Group is based in Amsterdam, Netherlands.