The challenge in the past is that every time you are developing a new webapp or bot which requires authentication you will go through all the steps i.e. creating service principle, grant permissions, set credentials, store credentials on resources, rotate credentials, and etc..   Now there is a better solution: Managed identities for Azure resources.

One of the examples where you can adopt the managed identities when you want to build an application using web application that accesses Azure blob storage without having to manage any credentials.

How to create

Managed identities is using service principle under the hook. Once you created the user assigned identity in Azure portal the same way as you creating other Azure resources,  you can now going to the target resources i..e blob storage and assign the permission i.e. contributor role to the user assigned identity you just created.   Now, last step is to go to the Azure resource where you want to access the target blob storage, i.e. azure function, and in Identity blade, you can add the user assigned identity that you just have created.

Below is the example demonstrates authenticating the BlobClient from the Azure.Storage.Blobs client library using the DefaultAzureCredential with a user assigned managed identity configured.

DefaultAzureCredential discovery mechanism allows you to run the code with your signed in account when you are using the code locally and automatically switching to use the user assigned identity when the code is deployed in azure. Please be noted that your local account will require to have the same permission as the user assigned identity in Azure.

Managed identities for Azure resources provide Azure services with an automatically managed identity in Azure Active Directory. Using a managed identity, you can authenticate to any service that supports Azure AD authentication without managing credentials. You can find the list of available services here.