Well, the above is a serious problem if this data is at all meaningful to your business. Backups are critical, in part to prevent exactly the sort of issue that you're dealing with right now. An export is not a backup; there are too many things that can go wrong as a part of an export.
What kind of a database are we talking about here, anyway? You mention in your OP that they somehow lost data in the exports and in the database itself?? That sounds awfully fishy to me.
You're telling me. All I know for sure is I can't do a back up restore from thiers because that's how it is in thier backup right now.
It's VisionLink OS. I don't know if it's technically actually a database because it's software for information and referral. But my part of it is maintaining a listing of agencies, and what programs and services they provide. IIRC it's done in XML but I could be wrong; honestly once it gets technical I get lost pretty quick.
We've had problems before with the data provider field (denotes what location provided the data) changing back and forth randomly too, and they're thinking it could be tied into a similar issue; I don't know how they resolved it that time but it has been stopped. IF that's the case it could have happened a few days to a couple weeks ago, and only been caught during the quality check when they tried to export--I don't go in and review records daily (although it isn't a bad idea, I may need to start doing that).
I'm hoping :X If I have to do this next month I'm going to scream.
Ugly people have sex all the time. We wouldn't have 6 and a half billion humans if you had to be beautiful to get laid.