Intercom Webhooks

This guide covers how to use ngrok to integrate your localhost app with Intercom by using Webhooks. Intercom webhooks can be used to notify an external application whenever specific events occur in your Intercom account.

By integrating ngrok with Intercom, you can:

TL;DR

  1. Launch your local webhook listener.
    npm start
  2. Launch ngrok.
    ngrok http 3000
  3. Configure Intercom webhooks with your ngrok URL.

  4. Bonus! Use ngrok like a PRO.

Start your app

For this tutorial, we'll use the sample NodeJS app available on GitHub.

To install this sample, run the following commands in a terminal:

git clone https://github.com/ngrok/ngrok-webhook-nodejs-sample.git
cd ngrok-webhook-nodejs-sample
npm install

This will get the project installed locally.

Now you can launch the app by running the following command:

npm start

The app runs by default on port 3000.

You can validate that the app is up and running by visiting http://localhost:3000. The application logs request headers and body in the terminal and responds with a message in the browser.

Download and Launch ngrok

Once your app is running successfully on localhost, let's get it on the internet securely using ngrok!

  1. If you're not an ngrok user yet, just sign up for a free account
  2. Download the ngrok agent
  3. Go to the ngrok dashboard and copy your authtoken.
    Tip: The ngrok agent uses the authtoken to log into your account when you start a tunnel.
  4. Add the authtoken to your ngrok agent:
    ngrok config add-authtoken [authtoken]
  5. Start ngrok by running the following command:

    ngrok http 3000

  6. ngrok will display a URL where your localhost application is available on the internet (copy this URL for use with Intercom).
    ngrok agent running

Integrate ngrok and Intercom

To register a webhook on your Intercom account follow the instructions below:

  1. Access the Intercom Home page, and sign in using your Intercom account.

  2. On the left menu, click your avatar icon and then click Settings. Tip: The avatar icon is below the What's new bell icon. If your avatar icon doesn't appear, zoom out on the page.

  3. In the Settings menu, expand the Apps & Integrations section and then click Developer Hub. Tip: If the Developer Guidelines popup appears, accept the guidelines by clicking Accept and Continue.

  4. In the Developer Hub page, click New App.

  5. In the New app popup window, provide a name for the app, select the appropriate workspace in which you work, keep Internal integration selected, and then click Create app.

  6. In your app page, click Webhooks under the Configure section of the left menu.

  7. In the Your request endpoint URL field enter the URL provided by the ngrok agent where your application is available on the internet (i.e. https://1a2b-3c4d-5e6f-7g8h-9i0j.sa.ngrok.io). Your request endpoint URL

  8. In the Webhook topics, select contact.user.created and then click Save.

    After you add a webhook to your Intercom account, Intercom will submit a test post request to your application through ngrok. Confirm your localhost app receives this test notification in the terminal.

  9. Optionally, in the Intercom Webhooks page, you can click Send a test request to resend this test post request to your application.

Run Webhooks with Intercom and ngrok

Because you've selected the contact.user.created event, you can trigger new calls from Intercom to your application by following the instructions below:

  1. In the same browser, access Intercom Home page, and then click the Contacts icon.

  2. On the left menu, click New, click New users or leads, and then click Create new user.

  3. In the Create a new user popup window, provide a Name, an Email, a User UI, and then click Create a user.

Confirm your localhost app receives the create user event notification and logs both headers and body in the terminal.

Tip: Intercom sends different request body contents depending on the event you select during the webhook registration.

Inspecting requests

When you launch the ngrok agent on your local machine, you can see two links: one for the tunnel to your app (it ends up in ngrok.io unless you're using custom domains) and a local URL for the Web Interface (a.k.a Request Inspector).

The Request Inspector shows all the requests made through your ngrok tunnel to your localhost app. When you click on a request, you can see details of both the request and the response.

Seeing requests is an excellent way of validating the data sent to and retrieved by your app via the ngrok tunnel. That alone can save you some time dissecting and logging HTTP request and response headers, methods, bodies, and response codes within your app just to confirm you are getting what you expect.

To inspect Intercom's webhooks call, launch the ngrok web interface (i.e. http://127.0.0.1:4040), and then click one of the requests sent by Intercom.

From the results, review the response body, header, and other details:

ngrok Request Inspector

Replaying requests

The ngrok Request Inspector provides a replay function that you can use to test your code without the need to trigger new events from Intercom. To replay a request:

  1. In the ngrok inspection interface (i.e. http://localhost:4040), select a request from Intercom.

  2. Click Replay to execute the same request to your application or select Replay with modifications to modify the content of the original request before sending the request.

  3. If you choose to Replay with modifications, you can modify any content from the original request. For example, you can modify the email field inside the body of the request.

  4. Click Replay.

Verify that your local application receives the request and logs the corresponding information to the terminal.

Add additional security using ngrok signature webhook verification

The ngrok signature webhook verification feature allows ngrok to assert that requests from your Intercom webhook are the only traffic allowed to make calls to your localhost app.

Note: This ngrok feature requires a Pro or Enterprise license.

This is a quick step to add extra protection to your application.

  1. Access the Intercom Developer Hub page, click your app name, and then click Basic information on the left menu.

  2. In the Basic information page, copy the Client secret value.

  3. Restart your ngrok agent by running the command, replacing {your client secret} with the value you have copied before:

    ngrok http 3000 --verify-webhook intercom --verify-webhook-secret {your client secret}

  4. Access the Intercom Home page and create an new contact.

Verify that your local application receives the request and logs information to the terminal.